North Carolina is one step closer to the legalization of sports betting. Operators applying for a sports betting license in the state are required to submit their proposed internal controls to the North Carolina State Lottery commission by January 26th. This is seen as a crucial step to ensure that the applicants are prepared for the launch of sports betting in the state.

During a recent meeting, the Commission approved processes and documents to advise applicants on how to submit their internal controls for approval. It is mandatory for every licensed operator to receive approval of their internal controls before they can offer sports betting in North Carolina.

Despite the progress, the opening date for legal sports betting in North Carolina remains uncertain. The launch is expected to take place in March 2024, but this largely depends on how long the license application process takes. The Commission is currently reviewing the applications of nine potential operators, which were opened last December after Governor Roy Cooper signed House Bill 347 into law in June.

Additionally, there are still pending decisions regarding sports betting rules in North Carolina. The Commission has yet to finalize these rules, but some measures have been outlined in the bill signed last year. This includes the authorization of bets on college sports, esports, and other sporting events approved by the Commission. Tax will be set at 18% of each license holder’s gross gaming revenue, and operators need a written designation agreement with a sports team, league, or venue to launch sports betting.

Some companies are already preparing to enter the North Carolina sports betting market. BetMGM has a market access agreement with the Charlotte Motor Speedway, while DraftKings will partner with Nascar. The Fanatics Sportsbook has also begun its market entry process with a partnership agreement with the NHL’s Carolina Hurricanes.

In addition, the Commission has approved Gaming Laboratories International (GLI) and BMM Testlabs as independent testing laboratories to work with companies in North Carolina. These labs will be responsible for evaluating gaming equipment, software, and processes to ensure compliance with state law and Commission rules. The Commission is also open to accepting submissions from other entities that would like to serve as independent testing laboratories.

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