As soon as Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmar passed the House Bill 4311, on December 19, 2019, PointsBet Holdings Ltd. and The Stars Group Inc. (TSG) promptly struck sports betting deal with Michigan tribal gaming operators, within a month.
On January 6, 2020, Australian-based PointsBet entered into a 20-year pact with Lac Vieux Desert (LVD) Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians; while TSG signed its agreement with the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians (LTBB Odawa), on the same day.
By signing the pacts, PointsBet and TSG go on to become the first online operators in Michigan, responsible for securing market access for betting and igaming.
PointsBet’s 20-year deal (with an extra 5-year option) entails rolling out an online Michigan sportsbook and a mobile app related to it, subject to regulatory approvals, state law, and license availability. Apart from this, LVD and PointsBet are in talks regarding the retail sportsbook operations at the tribes Northern Waters Casino Resort, situated on the tribe’s reservation in Watersmeet, Michigan.
LVD online sportsbook and online gaming will receive from PointsBet, market access fees along with a share of the net gaming revenues under this agreement.
Sam Swanell, PointsBet Group’s CEO, seemed quite glad to announce this promising agreement with “a forward-thinking tribe” such as LVD.
The other similar contract signed on the same day between TSG and LTBB Odawa gives the PokerStars and FOX Bet operator access to Michigan online betting and igaming market.
Fox Bet’s CEO Robin Chhabra happily declared that the deal would intensify the market access as FOX Bet proceeds/continues to become “one of the leaders in the emerging US online betting and gaming market.”
The contract will lend TSG first skin market access to work/function/operate and brand real-money online betting, poker, and casino in Michigan, subject to the required regulatory approvals. In exchange, the tribe is going to get a portion of the revenue coming from igaming offerings, as per the terms in the agreement.
Michigan has become the 20th state to legalize sports betting.