Stars Group Joins U.S. Sports-Betting Fray With Jersey Deal

(Bloomberg) -- Online-gaming giant Stars Group Inc. piled into the burgeoning U.S. sports-betting market, expanding a partnership in New Jersey to take advantage of new rules enabled by a Supreme Court decision.

The Toronto-based operator of PokerStars and its partner, Resorts Casino Hotel in Atlantic City, said Thursday they plan to offer wagering products for dozens of sports, ranging from tennis to baseball to horse racing. The companies didn’t share details of the deal, which builds on an existing agreement for online casino games and poker under the PokerStarsNJ brand.

Gambling operators including Caesars Entertainment Corp. and MGM Resorts International are flocking to the sports-betting business after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in May that allowed states to legalize such wagers. Casinos and race tracks have typically been given the right to take such bets in the handful of states that have now approved it. Many of them have chosen to partner with operators of betting shops or online gambling sites in Europe, where sports-betting has been legal for years.

Resorts is managed by Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment. Stars, which has been steadily decreasing its reliance on poker, strengthened its sports-betting foothold in Europe after agreeing to buy Sky Betting & Gaming for $4.7 billion in April, weeks after buying the subsidiary of William Hill Plc in Australia. Stars’ shares are up 46 percent this year.

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