Caesars to launch sports betting in NC through tribal partnership

Caesars Harrah's
Image: Shutterstock / Billy F Blume Jr

Caesars Entertainment is securing market access in North Carolina’s forthcoming online sports betting market through a partnership with a federally recognized tribe.

The gaming and hospitality giant will work with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians to launch online sports betting operations in the Tar Heel State later this year pending regulatory approval. Caesars Sportsbook, the company’s flagship operator, plans to launch in North Carolina on March 11 — the date the North Carolina State Lottery Commission has permitted licensed operators in the state to begin accepting wagers.

The agreement between Caesars and the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians builds on a previous relationship between the two entities that began with the launch of two brick-and-mortar sportsbooks in the Tar Heel State — Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort and Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino. As part of its latest deal with the tribe, Caesars will have exclusive rights to online sports wagering at the two facilities and on tribal lands across the state.

“Our relationship with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians has spanned more than two decades,” said Caesars Digital President Eric Hession in a statement. “Expanding this longstanding partnership allows us to build on the premier sports wagering experience enjoyed at our in-person sportsbooks by bringing a responsible way to enjoy sports at a deeper level to the hands of North Carolinians 21 and older across the state.”

Caesars, which will allow users to register for a sportsbook account in North Carolina on March 1, has also announced plans to deploy exclusive offers and marketing for bettors at its facilities.

Stiff competition in North Carolina for Caesars

Caesars will be entering a North Carolina sports betting market that features some of the largest operators in the U.S.

Last month, FanDuel agreed to a deal with the PGA Tour to launch sports betting in North Carolina while DraftKings landed a pact with NASACR to go live in the Tar Heel State.

Emerging operator Underdog Fantasy has also announced plans to enter North Carolina’s sports betting market, which is projected to generate more than $70 million in revenue after its five years of regulated wagering.