DraftKings second to launch mobile app for Illinois sportsbetting market

Illinois sports bettors just got their second mobile option from DraftKings. Now launched with the Casino Queen digital app, the service is up and running and ready to compete with BetRivers.

Although advertising had been running in the state for a while now, the app was finally given the clear to launch after some fancy renaming at the Casino Queen. “Illinois is home to some of the most passionate sports fans and most iconic sports teams in the entire country,” said Jason Robins, DraftKings co-founder and CEO, in a press release. “DraftKings’ dedication to innovation and providing customers with a premier sports betting experience has made our app the top-rated option and we can’t wait for fans in Illinois to discover why.”

Sadly for the operator, they missed out on a huge window of opportunity created by the Covid-19 pandemic. Governor J.B. Pritzker had lifted a requirement for in-person registration at casinos for mobile sports betting. That lift has since expired, so DraftKings potential customers will have to head over to the Casino Queen, 4 hours from Chicago, to get registered.

But that won’t stop them from monopolizing the St. Louis mobile sports betting market. The Casino Queen is just across the state line from Missouri’s biggest city, and DraftKings is expected to dominate in a state where mobile betting still hasn’t been legislated.

“We are excited to bring sports betting to Illinois and the St. Louis community,” Terry Downey, president of DraftKings at Casino Queen, said via press release. “The marriage of two iconic brands promises to create an unforgettable experience that can only be found at DraftKings at Casino Queen.”

DraftKings became just the second live mobile/online sports betting app in Illinois today when it launched its DraftKings at Casino Queen digital app and took the first bet at its retail location in East St. Louis, according to a company press release.

But they will have competition for Illinois sports bettors. BetRivers launched in June 18, during the in-person registration pause, and could have already picked up a decent part of the market.