One of Europe’s leading online gambling brands has secured entrance into its second statewide market, as Kindred Group inked a sports betting and iGaming deal with Pennsylvania’s Mohegan Sun Pocono casino this week.
As part of the five-year deal, Kindred Group – formerly known as Unibet Group and operator of the Unibet, Maria Casino, 32Red, and iGame brands throughout Europe and the U.K. – is slated to run sportsbooks both onsite and via an online / mobile platform, along with online casino gaming.
Kindred Group is already a presence in neighboring New Jersey, where the company recently linked up with Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City to run the latter’s iGaming platform.
Pennsylvania’s first land-based sportsbooks went live last November via Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course. The Keystone State passed a sprawling gambling expansion package in late 2017, authorizing sports betting along with online casino, poker, and lottery.
While brick and mortar bet shops are now up and running, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) is currently in the process of approving online sportsbooks and casinos for launch.
Kindred Already a Big Deal in PA Thanks to Kambi Sportsbooks
The Mohegan Sun Pocono move may mark Kindred Group’s first official play in Pennsylvania’s emerging market, but bettors there are already familiar with the company’s product.
Backend software and B2B provider Kambi – a subsidiary of Kindred Group spun off in 2014 -currently operates four of the six legal sportsbooks to go live in Pennsylvania thus far.
Rivers Casino, Sugarhouse Casino, Parx Casino and South Philadelphia Turf Club all utilize Kambi’s risk management system, but Mohegan Sun Pocono still needs to apply for a sports betting license before launching its own book.
Aviram Alroy – who serves as vice president of interactive gaming for Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment – offered the following comments on the Kindred deal as part of a press release:
“We’ve aligned with one of the best online casino and sport book operators in online regulated markets which will allow us to offer best in class experience to our existing customers as well as attracting new ones.
Introduction of the Kindred offering to the market is a great positive for Mohegan Sun as well as the state of Pennsylvania.”
Manuel Stan – senior vice president for Kindred’s U.S. operation – outlined the company’s vision for American sports betting expansion in a public statement:
“We are excited and proud to extend our US footprint into one of the largest US states to regulate both online sports betting and casino.
Finding a strong partner who shares Kindred’s dedication to customer experience and values has been critical, and I am delighted that we have found just that in Mohegan Sun Pocono.
I am confident that Kindred and Mohegan Sun Pocono will offer customers in Pennsylvania a truly great online sports betting and casino experience.”
No Clear Timeline for Online or Live Launch for Mohegan Sun Pocono
Because the PGCB is taking its time in finalizing online wagering regulations, the launch date for a Mohegan Sun Pocono online sportsbook / casino powered by Kindred Group is still up in the air.
In an interview with The Citizens’ Voice – the local newspaper in Wilkes-Barre where Mohegan Sun Pocono is located – Alroy clarified that launch dates for either the onsite or online sportsbooks have yet to be determined:
“We, along with Kindred, are working with the Pennsylvania regulator and are planning to launch when we’re confident that we’ll have a strong offering in the market.
We have yet to finalize the sport betting lounge location at this point, but we want it to be easy to get to, and exciting to stay in.
We’re going through the same process with the launch with the regulator as we are with online, so we expect to launch when we feel we have a strong offering.”