The Charlotte Hornets made big news last week when they announced that bet365 would be their new official sports betting partner. The deal allows for branding around the Hornets’ arena and gives bet365 a license to offer their online casino if sports betting goes live in January 2024. That makes bet365 the first and only online operator to be awarded access to the Tar Heel State.
“Since the day Governor Cooper signed sports wagering into law at Spectrum Center in June, we sought a partner that would help us provide our fans with new, additional opportunities to engage with their favorite sports teams. Hornets spokesperson Jacob Gallagher said if the deal. “We are confident that bet365 is a great fit with our organization and can help us do that.”
North Carolina’s sports betting rules require online operators to partner with a North Carolina sports franchise, stadium, track, course, etc. That means they do not need to go through tribal casinos. The state currently allows for up to 12 online operators, but only bet365 has officially gained access.
Bet365 Continues US Expansion
The Hornets are the fifth major US sports team to partner with bet365. The UK-based operator has slowly been growing their presence in the US. They are currently live in Colorado, Ohio, Kentucky, New Jersey, Virginia, and Iowa.
While bet365 has partners around the US, their one with the Hornets will give them a new level of visibility in the US. The operator will have signage at the Spectrum Center, on the Hornets’ websites and social media, and on the baseline of the court. That means their logos will be visible during TV broadcasts, increasing the European sportsbook’s exposure.
While bet365 has access to North Carolina’s new market, there is no date for when that will go live. The hope is that the state will be ready to go live in January 2024, but a lot of work remains to meet that goal.