International Betting Giant to Consider Setting Up Colorado Sportsbook Headquarters

Dan Favale
By , Updated on: May 3, 2023 08:00 PM
International Betting Giant to Consider Setting Up Colorado Sportsbook Headquarters

A major international sports gambling player is looking to set up shop inside the United States, and Colorado is reportedly on their short list of options.

The company in question is Bet365. Founded in the year 2000, the United Kingdom has always been home to their primary operations. But as sports betting in the United States continues to increase in scale, operators from abroad are looking for ways to formally enter a market in which they, frankly, already have an official presence.

Thus, many are wondering whether Bet365 setting up a Colorado sportsbook headquarters could start a larger trend throughout the country. It's not just a fair query. It's a necessary one. But they need to first choose Colorado—or another location in the United States—as their next home base. Until then, this is all just speculation, albeit conjecture with a ton of potential implications.

More Than Just a Colorado Sportsbook Headquarters is on the Table

According to The Denver Post, Bet365 isn't just considering a Colorado sportsbook headquarters. They are also looking at locations in Arizona and Tennessee. That hasn't stopped Colorado from making an intense push. The city of Colorado, which is where the sportsbook headquarters would be built, has rolled out a red carpet's worth of incentives. Here are more details details, courtesy of The Denver Post's Aldo Svaldi:

"The Colorado Economic Development Commission extended nearly $19 million in state tax credits on Thursday to two companies that are considering locating more than 1,250 jobs in the state. The largest award, at $14 million in Job Growth Incentive Tax Credits, went to a sports betting and gaming company from the United Kingdom that is looking to make a $40 million investment to build out 120,000 square feet of office space. Project Forge, the code name given to the applicant, is expected to create 807 net new jobs at an average annual wage of $97,238, which is 108% of the average annual wage in Denver County."

'The positions include senior leadership, software developers, data engineers, product and customer service managers, fraud and risk supervisors and traders. The company has more than 6,000 employees, including some at its U.S. base in New Jersey, but none in Colorado. Tucson and Nashville are competing with Denver for what will become the company’s new U.S. office."

As Svaldi notes, the sports betting giant already has a base of operations inside the United States. However, it isn't anywhere near as large as the plan for a new headquarters. Operating out of New Jersey also puts them thousands of miles away from the California sports betting market. That matters for all operators. Though sports betting in California isn't currently legal, it's considered, at worst, a distant inevitability. Operators will want a foothold within striking distance of what's considered the USA's largest sports market.

Colorado has Tennessee (specifically, Nashville) beat in this department. They're a short flight away from California. It also bodes well for Denver that sports betting in Colorado has been legal for slightly longer. And while they don't generate as much annual revenue, they are a far more liberal state, which usually signals they'll offer steeper tax breaks when it results in creating mass amounts of jobs.

Will More International Sportsbooks Look to Establish Larger Footprints in the United States?

At first blush, it may not seem essential for gambling operators abroad to enter the United States in a physical or official capacity. After all, as it stands, many of the sites from our reviews of the top online sportsbooks already have an extensive client base in the USA. They don't have an urgent need to recalibrate their entire business model by expanding their physical operations.

Still, there are unique benefits to setting up shop as a licensed domestic operator. Sportsbooks do need to pay taxes on their profits, but they also open up entirely new revenue streams. Working inside the country would allow them to offer both online and in-person options, thereby diversifying their business portfolio. They also have a much easier time advertising and processing transactions while operating on a more local level.

More than that, international sportsbooks may have a harder time competing with domestic operators as time goes on. Eventually, sports betting could be legal in every state. Right now, international operators often service customers who don't have the option of placing legal wagers where they live. It will be more convenient for them to create accounts with domestic sportsbooks when given the opportunity, since their investment will be both protected and backed by the United States government. Some states have also proposed gaming laws that would more rigidly police and seek to prevent U.S. citizens from signing up with sportsbooks stationed outside the country. 

This isn't an immediate concern. More than one-third of the United States still hasn't legalized sports betting, and international gambling sites will always pique the attention of customers who don't want to pay escalating tax rates on their winnings. 

For some of the bigger international sportsbooks, though, Bet365's approach will be worth monitoring. If they ante up their commitment to United States operations by opening a major headquarters in Colorado (or elsewhere) and then parlay that increased presence into larger profit margins, their trajectory could serve as blueprint other gambling sites abroad look to follow.

Take a look at this list of the top online sportsbooks so you can decide which one works for all of your sports betting needs:

Meet the author

Dan Favale

Dan Favale leverages over 12 years of sports journalism expertise in his role as New York staff writer. He provides in-depth analysis across the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, tennis, NASCAR, college basketball, and sports betting. Dan co-hosts the popular Hardwood Knocks NBA podc...

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