Sports betting will be a ‘huge industry’ after Supreme Court ruling, says DraftKings CEO

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Now that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled states can legalize sports betting, DraftKings is ready to take bets from its users.

The company had been working on a sports betting product that would let people gamble on the outcome of games or point totals — options it wasn’t allowed to offer before Monday’s ruling.

“This is going to be a huge industry, and there will be a lot of competition, which is great for consumers,” DraftKings CEO Jason Robins told CNBC’s “Power Lunch.”

DraftKings and its competitors have been limited to offering fantasy sports games while U.S. courts decided whether states would have to follow federal law or decide on a state-by-state basis whether to allow sports gambling. In fantasy games, users build a team out of individual athletes and points are tabulated based on in-game actions. Providers of these games have argued their products require more skill than chance like in traditional gambling.

On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld a 2014 New Jersey law allowing for sports betting in the state casinos and racetracks, opening the door for others to legalize as well. Sports betting in Nevada, where it is currently legal in some jurisdictions, reached $4.9 billion in 2017. Tusk Strategies’ Bradley Tusk — whose company invested in DraftKing rival FanDuel — told ESPN the court decision doubled the value of its equity, and once states began legalization it could quintuple.

“It’s really kind of a ridiculous notion that [the government thinks] that a product that you know people are currently partaking in online through illegal offshore black market websites and mobile apps, that you are going to eradicate that by only allowing it in certain offline places,” Robins said. “I think the real goal is to take something that’s an unregulated black market activity and bring it to the light, and you have to have mobile online to do that the right way.”

“You see that in every industry in the world, and this is no difference,” he added.

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