Webis Holdings subsidiary WatchandWager has renewed its online pari-mutuel betting licence in California for a period of two years.
Approved by the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB), the licence will run from 2019 until 2021 and allow WatchandWager to continue to accept online pari-mutuel wagers from residents in the US state.
Webis, which specialises in pool wagering and operates the WatchandWager Cal Expo harness track in California, had secured an initial three-month extension for the licence prior to full approval.
“Our licence to accept online wagers in California and at our physical racetrack operation are a tremendous asset to the company,” WatchandWager president Ed Comins said.
Confirmation of the new licence comes as California mulls legalising sports wagering on a larger scale in the state. Although there are no bills currently under consideration, Assembly member Adam Gray could return with a bill he originally put forward prior to the Supreme Court ruling on PASPA.
In July 2017, Gray proposed amending state law to permit sports betting, should “a change in federal law occur”, specifically referencing PASPA. Shortly after the Supreme Court moved to repeal PASPA, Gray said he would reintroduce the bill. According to WatchandWager, the bill is close to the Committee stage in Sacramento.
Comins said it is “highly likely that sports betting will be approved in the state”, meaning WatchandWager’s status as a licensed track operator and racing association would place it as one of only a handful of companies able to legally accept sports bets, both online and at its Cal Expo track facility.
“These are very dynamic times in the racing and gaming industry in the USA, and we look forward to being ready to offer sports wagering to California residents as it is approved by the legislature,” he said.
Image: Sarah Sapp