Keweenaw Bay Indian Community and Golden Nugget Online Gaming have teamed up for online gambling opportunities in Michigan, ahead of a planned launch in 2021.
Golden Nugget to Go Online in Michigan with Sports and Casino
Golden Nugget Online Gaming has secured market access into Michigan, one of the latest states to legalize online gambling. Fully owned by Golden Nugget, the company has teamed up with Ojibwa Casino, and specifically the entity in charge of the casino, i.e. the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community.
Ojibwa Casino will help Golden Nugget Online Gaming set up both a sportsbook and an online casino in the state, and push the company’s footprint beyond its bastion in New Jersey. The Nugget was one of the first online operators in the Garden States and is now looking towards other worthwhile markets.
The operator seems to be leap-frogging Pennsylvania for the time being and focusing on Michigan as a less-contentious state, although Golden Nugget has signaled its interest for the Keystone State unequivocally.
Commenting on the latest development, Golden Nugget Online Gaming president Thomas Winter had this to say:
“Golden Nugget Online Gaming is thrilled to partner with the Ojibwa Casino to provide casino players in Michigan with a premium online casino and sportsbook experience.”
He expressed further conviction that players in Michigan would be able to recognize Golden Nugget as a leading and trusted brand. Golden Nugget is also hoping to jump the gun on most other brands, as Michigan is not due to give an official start to its online gaming and betting platform until Q1, 2021.
Starting with Sports Betting Before 2021
The added difficulty of managing the novel coronavirus crisis has slowed down progress, but also highlighted the urgency of alternative, safer, and sustainable gaming and revenue. The Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB) has already voted on the necessary changes needed to start accepting betting and gaming license applications.
Director Richard S. Kalm said that sports betting operators would be able to accept their first bets before 2020 was out. Meanwhile, the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community already operates two casinos, one in Marquette and one in Baraga.
Commenting on the development, Keweenaw Bay Indian Community president Chris Swartz added that the company was excited to team up with Golden Nugget and push their product to the digital frontier. He further added:
“Working with a strong brand will be a perfect complement to our brand-new casino in Marquette as well as our casino in Baraga.”
Michigan is inclined to act quickly after the MGCB posted a statistic indicating that 59.3% of revenue has been lost year-over-year due to the coronavirus. With retail casinos limited to physical operations, MGM Grand, Greektown Casino and MotorCity Casino all saw a shuddering drop in overall results.