Horse racing giant Churchill Downs (CHDN) has inked a deal to get in on sports betting in New Jersey. – Investor's Business Daily

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Horse racing giant Churchill Downs (CHDN) has inked a deal to get in on sports betting in New Jersey.


The Kentucky Derby operator has sealed a partnership with Golden Nugget Atlantic City to enter real-money online gaming and sports betting markets there.

It comes just days after the Supreme Court backed the state’s bid to legalize such wagering by striking down a 1992 federal law that prohibited it.

“We are looking forward to offering integrated iGaming and sports betting products in New Jersey,” Churchill Downs CEO Bill Carstanjen said in a news release. “We have the unique opportunity to leverage our knowledge and experience operating the largest legal online horse racing wagering business in the U.S. as we enter the iGaming and sports betting markets.”

Nasdaq-listed Churchill Downs rose 2.9% to 306.40 on the stock market today. The stock, which broke out of a cup base Monday on the Supreme Court ruling, is now extended from the 279.55 buy point. The stock is the joint leader of the Leisure-Gaming/Equipment industry group, along with Las Vegas Sands (LVS).

Las Vegas Sands rose 0.6%. Wynn Resorts (WYNN) climbed 0.8% while MGM Resorts International (MGM) advanced 0.6%.

Sands, Wynn and, to a lesser extent, MGM are heavily exposed to Macau.

As for more-domestic casino names aside from Churchill Downs, Boyd Gaming (BYD) edged up 0.4% and Penn National Gaming (PENN) 1%. Boyd is working on the right side of a consolidation while Penn National is in buy range.

Golden Nugget Atlantic City is operated by private company Landy’s.

Sports betting could start in a matter of weeks at casinos and racetracks in New Jersey.

Meanwhile, the Kentucky-based company also sealed an alliance with SBTech, a sports betting platform provider. This will let customers place online bets in Pennsylvania and Mississippi. It will also play a key role in New Jersey.

SBTech will provide a platform, consisting of a consumer website, mobile apps and back office systems to manage iGaming and sports wagering.

“We are confident that our strategic partnership with SBTech provides us with an industry leading platform to offer innovative and exciting, integrated iGaming and sports betting products,” CEO Carstanjen said.

The Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 had effectively outlawed sports betting nationwide, except for sports lotteries conducted in Oregon, Delaware and Montana, as well as the licensed sports pools in Nevada. In Murphy v. NCAA, New Jersey appealed the law and the Supreme Court on Monday found in the state’s favor.

Several other states are expected to legalize sports betting.

Paddy Power In FanDuel Move

Meanwhile Irish betting giant Paddy Power Betfair is in talks to merge its U.S. unit with fantasy sports company FanDuel. The bookmaker is eyeing the American market amid regulatory tightening in the U.K. and Australia.

“Discussions are ongoing and there is no certainty as to whether agreement will be reached, or as to the terms or timing of any transaction,” the Dublin-based company said in a statement.

FanDuel agreed to merge last year with rival DraftKings. But they scrapped the deal after the U.S. Federal Trade Commission objected on antitrust grounds.

Last year Paddy Power acquired fantasy sports company Draft for $48 million.


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