Jay-Z may no longer be in a New York state of mind.
As AfroTech previously reported, the billionaire business mogul made a move to open a New York sportsbook in partnership with sports e-retailer Fanatics, making a bid with the New York State Gaming Commission back in August 2021.
Now, according to 1010 WINS, the state’s gambling commission has approved nine mobile sports betting operators for the state, but neither Jay-Z-backed Fanatics nor Barstool Sports’ Penn Sports Interactive was recommended for a vote by the state.
Thomas DiNapoli, the State’s comptroller, said that he estimates mobile sports gambling could bring in an excess of $500 million by 2025 to the state. But, it should be noted, the nine companies that were approved — including DraftKings, FanDuel, and BetMGM — have agreed to pay a tax rate of 51 percent to the state of New York to operate their companies in the state. So, perhaps this can be considered a “blessing in disguise” of sorts.
Casinos and mobile companies have been pushing for legalization in New York for decades, and they finally were able to get approval on Nov. 8. But the history of gambling in New York is, to put it mildly, a politically rancorous one. The state has historically refused to allow Las Vegas-style gambling until 2013 when the state agreed to allow it on non-Native lands (which is where they were previously confined). That said, despite this approval, only four casinos that allow for sports betting exist in the state of New York, and to date, these casinos cannot accept bets because a proper license has not yet been issued to them.
As for Jay-Z and Fanatics, it’s safe to say they’ll both be alright. According to CNBC, the company has received a valuation of $18 billion after the much-needed infusion of capital from Hova’s Roc Nation, amongst other investors like SoftBank and Major League Baseball. The company, which is based in Florida, has also expanded its interests into the NFT market and is expected to make more than $3.4 billion in revenue in 2021, according to The Wall Street Journal.