Washington DC: Gambetdc’s Hold on Sports Betting Apps May End Soon

Washington DC: Gambetdc’s Hold on Sports Betting Apps May End Soon


GambetDC, a sports betting platform serving players from Washington DC, has a reputation for being buggy and has not met the expectations of many users. 

A new bill seeks to promote competition in the market, allowing it to flourish and function to its full potential. 

The successes of several providers in neighboring states should offer the District of Columbia useful lessons.

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Replace GambetDC with Competition

Elissa Silverman, a DC council member, has sponsored a bill that could remove GambetDC’s monopoly on online sports betting in the District of Columbia. GambetDC was created by the Greek gambling company Intralot for the DC Lottery in 2019, and its history thus far has been rather turbulent. 

The premise behind the sole-source contract at the time was that it would allow the state to quickly conquer the markets of Maryland and Virginia, which were nearby.

The destiny of the new measure will be determined by the end of the 24th Council Period, which concludes later this year after two years. If it does not pass by then, it may be introduced at the start of the 25th Council Period, which begins next year and ends in 2024. 

This seems unlikely, especially if the main intent of the law is to allow various sports betting apps in the district. The criticisms of GambetDC and its deficiencies should make the decision to pass the bill pretty simple.

Nevertheless, the proposed legislation is titled the Sports Wagering and Fair Competition Amendment Act of 2022 and has various foci. We’ve already established that it would permit any company to apply for a license to operate online and mobile sports betting apps in the District. 

Notably, the measure also stipulates that the Intralot contract will be totally canceled after its expiration date in 2024, with no chance of renewal.

Much-Required Changes Induce a New Outlook

Silverman’s measure also proposes tax rate parity with Virginia and Maryland at 15%. The bill would also require competitive bidding for future sports betting businesses and contracts to operate the District of Columbia lottery system. 

This is a crucial argument, as proponents of the Intranet deal said that it would reduce regulatory costs while raising the District’s sports betting profits.

While this may have made sense at the time, competitive markets with BetMGM, FanDuel, and DraftKings have already demonstrated that diversity and competition breed superior service and user experience. In turn, this should enhance profitability because bettors will be able to enjoy the experience and wager more, resulting in increased activity and involvement as well as increased revenue.

There is evidence that either technique could be advantageous; yet, the District may require this type of adjustment. GambetDC has a history of failing gamblers and fans at the worst possible time, as evidenced in February of this year when it failed to function during the Super Bowl. While improvements have been made to the app, it is typically still considered to be behind its competition, and even upgrades can sometimes cause it to malfunction. Therefore, regardless of which model is superior in principle, if it does not work in practice, as is the case with GambetDC, it is likely time for a change.

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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.