Betfred Shutters Its Maryland Sports Betting Operations

Written By T.J. McBride on June 22, 2024
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After struggling to gain market share in the Maryland sports betting industry, Betfred has decided to bow out.

The online and retail sportsbook entered the Maryland market less than two years ago. It will cease retail operations on June 30 and mobile services at the end of July.

It comes at a time when three new operators are vying to offer Maryland sports betting in the near future.

Betfred near bottom in MD sports betting handle

Betfred’s exit was announced at this week’s Maryland Lottery and Gaming Commission meeting.

Betfred originally entered the Maryland sports betting market through its partnership with Long Shot’s in Frederick. It opened a retail sportsbook in Long Shot’s and launched a mobile platform.

Unfortunately, Betfred never caught on in Maryland. In May, the sportsbook took just $166,925 of retail sports wagers and $496,979 of mobile bets. With those figures, it ranked 12th out of 13 retail sportsbooks in the state and 10th out of 11 online sports betting operators.

That’s despite the Maryland sports betting market being more popular than ever. Sports betting handle was up nearly 35% in May year-over-year.

Long Shot’s looking for new sportsbook partner

Betfred’s exit was not a shock for Maryland Lottery and Gaming Director John Martin.

“This is not the first time this has happened in Maryland, and I do not think it is going to be the last time. The [Betfred] retail operations will close on June 30. The mobile operations are closed on the 31st of July. So, they will be proceeding on a new relationship, the folks at Long Shot’s.”

As an off-track betting operator, Long Shot’s was able to partner with a sportsbook because Maryland allows for 15 “Class B” licenses to be used by smaller gambling operations. With that license now unused, the next step for Long Shot’s is to find a new sports betting partner.

Smaller sportsbooks like Betfred can find it difficult to compete in Maryland. DraftKings MD and FanDuel MD dominate the market. In May, the two accounted for nearly 80% of all online wagers in the state.

Betfred is still live in nine states:

  • Arizona
  • Colorado
  • Iowa
  • Louisiana
  • Nevada
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania
  • Virginia
  • Washington

Three operators on cusp of entering market

Despite Betfred’s departure, three sportsbooks are working to get licensed in Maryland.

The operator closest to securing a license is the Veteran’s Services Corporation, which has plans to enter the Maryland sports betting market on July 1. Its platform is operated through Bee-Fee Limited.

On May 24, the operator participated in a controlled demonstration. It is based in Great Britain and has only operated in the US as a subcontractor for Intralot in Washington, D.C.

Then, Bally Bet is the next closest to obtaining a Maryland sports betting license. Officials haven’t announced an exact launch date, but it is expected to happen in July.

The third operator vying for a Maryland sports betting license is Betr Sportsbook. The company received initial approval from Maryland Lottery officials. However, Betr still needs approval from the Maryland Sports Wagering Application Review Commission before it can conduct a controlled demonstration.

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T.J. McBride

T.J. McBride is a writer and reporter based in Denver, Colorado who covers the Denver Nuggets as a beat writer. His byline can be found across many websites such as ESPN, FiveThirtyEight, Bleacher Report, and others.

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