Illinois: Tekkorp Digital Still Sole Applicant for a Sportsbook License

Illinois: Tekkorp Digital Still Sole Applicant for a Sportsbook License

Tekkorp Digital

Illinois‘ bid to attract new players to its online sports betting industry may fail, as the final four candidates may withdraw from the license application process.

Tekkorp Digital is the last remaining bidder, although its licensing success is contingent on its acquisition of the Mexican sportsbook Caliente Interactive.

The transaction is contingent upon a shareholder vote scheduled for October 13.

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Only Bidder in Illinois for Online-Only Sports Betting Licenses

According to the Chicago Tribune, the Illinois Gaming Board initiated the application process for new online-only sportsbook licenses in December 2021. Four companies submitted applications for three available licenses with a significant charge of $20 million. Notably, physical locations that provide sports betting pay license fees that are half of this amount.

Eventually, three of the bidders withdrew or were disqualified, leaving Tekkorp Digital Acquisition Corp. as the sole survivor. The application procedure has been extremely disappointing. First, Tipico’s application was denied since it was submitted beyond the deadline. Then, Florida-based Digital Gaming withdrew its application without providing a specific reason.

Fubo Gaming, a subsidiary of the streaming service FuboTV, was subsequently excluded from the application process. According to the Illinois Gaming Board, a key employee of the company has been found guilty of dishonesty or moral turpitude, which is against the rules and has led to Fubo Gaming’s disqualification. The company has argued that it has been awarded licenses in other U.S. states and that it disagrees with the Illinois Gaming Board’s decision.

Tekkorp Digital’s Application is Likewise Fraught with Uncertainty

Tekkorp Digital is a Las Vegas-based special purpose acquisition corporation (SPAC). It is now in the process of acquiring Caliente Interactive, a Mexican sports betting operator. However, the finalization of the deal remains highly questionable as it is contingent on a vote by Tekkorp Digital’s shareholders on October 13. In the event that the company’s shareholders vote against the acquisition of Caliente Interactive, Tekkorp Digital will withdraw from the transaction and the license application process. 

This sequence of events would result in the termination of the licensing procedure by the Illinois Gaming Board, which has declared that it may launch a new bidding cycle if the present one fails to produce any licensees. In addition to these issues, Stop Predatory Gambling has informed the Illinois Gaming Board that Caliente Interactive is a subsidiary of Grupo Caliente, which is owned by Jorge Hank Rhon.

In the letter, the NGO reminds the Board that Rhon has been implicated in a number of criminal actions, including money laundering and drug trafficking. It further asks the Board not to proceed with Tekkorp Digital’s licensing.



About Lou De Aguila

Lou Aguila is a news and feature writer for Golden Casino News. For over a decade, Lou has published news and featured articles for some of the most reputable sports betting and online casino sites in the world, including BetNow.UK, VegasOdds, and BWin. Apart from being a hardcore live casino punter, he also covers sports stories in North American leagues from time to time.