Caesars Eyes D.C. Sports Betting Expansion with D.C. United Deal
D.C. United and Caesars Entertainment Corp. are reportedly in talks about opening a sportsbook at Audi Field, the home stadium of the Major League Soccer team.
The ongoing negotiations are also believed to involve a sponsorship deal that would see the major casino operator’s logo appear on the team’s jersey from next season.
According to people familiar with the matter, D.C. United and Caesars are both eager to open a sports betting facility at Audi Field sometime in the spring. If this happens, the team’s home stadium could become the first major venue in the city to launch a sportsbook since the D.C. Council approved the legalization of athletic gambling in late 2018.
Commenting on the reports about their potential collaboration with D.C. United, Caesars Executive VP for Communications and Government Relations Richard Broome said that they are interested in a partnership with the soccer team, but “aren’t there yet.”
D.C. United Chief Business Officer Andy Bush commented that they are “absolutely excited” about the opportunity to partner with Caesars and that “it would be an incredible opportunity to engage with our fans.”
In order to be able to add a sportsbook at Audi Field, D.C. United will have to apply for a license from city officials and to pay a $125,000 license fee. The District is set to open the sports betting license application process in early December.
Work on the Sportsbook Has Reportedly Begun
Contractors at Audi Field, a 20,000-capacity stadium in Southwest Washington, have been working on scheduled upgrades and other renovations for several weeks now. According to sources, the unspecified renovations would also include the sports betting facility.
It is unknown whether the sportsbook would occupy existing space at the sports venue or would be part of new construction at the site.
Sources also said that the Audi Field sports betting facility would feature a restaurant and a bar and would look more “like a beer garden of the future” than what bettors are accustomed to see in traditional sportsbooks.
Aside from gaming and non-gaming resorts around the world, Caesars also operates 30 sportsbooks in seven US states. The company has been able to expand its wagering footprint significantly since the May 2018 annulment of the federal ban on sports betting.
As mentioned above, the partnership between D.C. United and Caesars would also extend to a jersey sponsorship. The casino operator’s logo will appear on the right sleeve of the soccer team’s jersey from next season. However, the Caesars logo would not appear on D.C. United youth academy uniforms.
News about Caesars and D.C. United potentially teaming up to bring sports betting to Audi Field came on the heels of last month’s announcement that William Hill has partnered sports and entertainment giant Monumental Sports & Entertainment to operate a sportsbook at Capital One Arena, the home venue of NHL’s Washington Capitals and NBA’s Washington Wizards.
Source: D.C. United is in talks with Caesars to open sportsbook at Audi Field, The Washington Post