BREAKING: Seven Approved For North Carolina Sports Betting Licenses

BREAKING: Seven Approved For North Carolina Sports Betting Licenses
Fact Checked by Nate Hamilton

Note: This story has been updated after an eighth North Carolina sports betting license was approved.

The North Carolina State Lottery Commission announced Thursday afternoon that it has awarded online sports betting licenses to seven companies.

That decision means bet365, BetMGM, DraftKings, ESPN BET, Fanatics, FanDuel and Underdog can start accepting registrations and deposits beginning as soon as noon Friday in advance of the official March 11 North Carolina sports betting launch.

“Issuing the first interactive sports wagering operator licenses today represents a major milestone in establishing legal sports betting in North Carolina,” said Ripley Rand, chair of the North Carolina State Lottery Commission. “North Carolinians can begin signing up for accounts on their mobile devices on Friday with the confidence they will soon be able to make wagers on their favorite sporting events securely and responsibly. We’re just 11 days away from the start of sports betting in North Carolina, and we will be working every day between now and then to see that our launch is a successful one.”

Stay with as we will continue to update this story and much more leading up to the launch of the best NC betting apps!

Eighth Licensee Approved

Hours after lottery officials announced the initial tranche of approved North Carolina sports betting operators, they sent out a second announcement to indicate Tribal Casino Gaming Enterprise, a division of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, was also approved on Thursday.

EBCI’s online sports betting division will partner with Caesars Sportsbook North Carolina, continuing a decades-long partnership between the two. Caesars manages the tribal nation’s two brick-and-mortar casinos in the western end of the state, including the retail sportsbooks at those venues. Earlier Thursday, Caesars was announced as an approved supplier.

EBCI was not the only tribe to seek a sports betting license. The Catawba Nation, which operates the Two Kings Casino in Kings Mountain 30 miles west of Charlotte, has applied as well, but its leaders have said they plan to launch their online sportsbook later.

Lottery officials said they expect to award additional licenses down the road.

North Carolina will mark the debut of Underdog as a sports betting operator. The Brooklyn-based company has been offering daily fantasy sports contests for several years. However, Founder and co-CEO Jeremy Levine has made it clear the company also wants to make a splash in the sports betting realm.

“North Carolina, we’re coming,” he posted on X with a copy of the Underdog license shortly after the commission’s announcement.

About The North Carolina Sports Betting Law

Under North Carolina’s sports betting law, anyone 21 and older can open up an account. The state will levy an 18% tax on operator revenues. That money will cover various initiatives, including $2 million yearly for problem gambling treatment and awareness, $1 million annually for youth sports access grants and at least $300,000 each year to 13 NCAA Division I and II public universities to bolster their athletic department. Proceeds will also be used to attract major events.

The fiscal analysis from last year’s law estimated the state would receive $64.6 million in tax revenue during the first year of operations. However, the state could easily top that, given how operators have posted higher margins in recent years. has estimated the first year of North Carolina sports betting will generate a handle of nearly $6.5 billion, and tax revenues could approach $130 million.



Steve Bittenbender
Steve Bittenbender
Sports Betting Expert & Insider

As a writer and analyst for, Steve not only covers gaming news and developments in North Carolina but also provides insights into what they mean for bettors, licensed operators and the state. <br> <br> Steve’s been featured in Axios, Queen City News, 97.9 The Hill, WNCT, CBS 17, WWAY, Spectrum News and several other news outlets across the Tar Heel State. He’s interviewed influential leaders in sports, {{anchor("gaming"," - News - Filtered",44394,"","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}} and politics. Over the past year, he’s covered the legalization of statewide {{anchor("North Carolina sports betting"," - Homepage","","","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}} as well as the discussion about approving commercial casinos. <br> <br> Back in August, Steve first reported that {{anchor("a March launch"," - News - Filtered",39792,"","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}} was most likely for North Carolina sports betting. <br> <br> Steve has broken news about {{anchor("what North Carolina sports betting apps will be available"," - News - Filtered",48516,"","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}}, and {{anchor("the state's launch"," - News - Filtered",45236,"","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}}. He has also covered {{anchor("how North Carolina college athletics programs stand to benefit from it"," - News - Filtered",38021,"","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}} and {{anchor("changes made to the sports betting law in the state budget"," - News - Filtered",40726,"","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}}. <br> <br> A veteran journalist with 25 years of experience covering sports, politics and business, Steve has reported on the gambling industry intently over the past five years, an era that has seen sports betting proliferate across the country in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s historic ruling overturning PASPA. <br> <br> You can also find Steve providing news updates and insights on his X account @BittGDCG.

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