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Michigan Approves 888 Holdings As Tribal Sports Betting Provider

Hannahville Indian Community Teams Up With 888

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The sports gambling market in the Wolverine State is set to get a bit more crowded.

The Michigan Gaming Control Board announced that it approved 888 Holdings’ VHL, Michigan LLC as the new platform provider for the Hannahville Indian Community’s internet sports betting site effective last week at 10 a.m. ET on Wednesday, Sept. 7.

The Hannahville tribe entered an agreement with 888 Holdings after TwinSpires, the original platform provider, announced earlier this year its plans to exit the business. The tribe operates Island Resort and Casino in Harris, Mich.

“The Hannahville tribe is the first operator in Michigan to change platform providers since internet gaming and sports betting began here in January 2021,” said Henry Williams, Michigan Gaming Control Board executive director. “The tribe has found another experienced partner, and I wish them continued success.”

The site will operate under the Sports Illustrated brand name. The tribe and 888 Holdings have requested the MGCB to authorize internet sports betting only.

“They likely will seek approval for internet [casino] gaming later this year,” regulators said. “TwinSpires will no longer be offering online sports betting or online casino services.”

The Hannahville Indian Community was among 10 licensees initially authorized by the MGCB to launch both forms of internet gaming in Michigan on Jan. 22, 2021.

In mid-April, the MGCB authorized the state’s 15th internet gaming and sports betting operator. Licenses by law are limited to the commercial casinos in the City of Detroit and federally recognized tribes in Michigan.

888 Holdings is a prominent sports betting and casino gambling brand globally. The company powers the World Series of Poker online site.

Michigan online sportsbooks took $206.1 million in July, the most recent month of reporting. The handle dropped 23.7% when compared with the June handle of $270 million.

Online casino win for July was $126.6 million, up 4.2% from the $121.5 million reported in June. Compared with July 2021, online casino win was up more than 40%.

Michigan is just one of a handful of states with both online sportsbooks and online casinos. Its online gambling market is worth about $150 million a month.