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Supreme Court Decision Empowers States to Take Action on Sports Betting

NetworkNewsWire Editorial Coverage: This month the Supreme Court issued a decision striking down a 1992 federal law banning commercials sports betting in 46 states. In one fell swoop, the 6-3 decision swung open the door for individual states to decide for themselves whether to allow sports betting within state boundaries. The decision, which may mean legalizing the estimated $150 billion in illegal wagers on professional and amateur sports that Americans make every year (http://nnw.fm/g6LGx), also has massive impact on sport betting organizations such as SinglePoint, Inc. (OTCQB: SING) (SING Profile), which has been in the daily fantasy sports arena since March 2016. Other companies that stand to benefit from this milestone ruling include Caesars Entertainment Corporation (NASDAQ: CZR), MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM), Penn National Gaming Inc. (NASDAQ: PENN) and Boyd Gaming Corporation (NYSE: BYD).

Gross Gaming Revenues Could Hit Billions

The overturned law — the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act — prohibited states from authorizing sports gambling on the outcome of sports events. One of the law’s sponsors, Senator Bill Bradley and a former college and professional basketball star, claimed the regulation was needed to safeguard the integrity of sports. However, the court ruled that the law was unconstitutional. “It is as if federal officers were installed in state legislative chambers and were armed with the authority to stop legislators from voting on any offending proposals,” Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. said, writing for the majority. “A more direct affront to state sovereignty is not easy to imagine.”

The ruling was met with enthusiasm by those in the gambling and casino industries, including SinglePoint, Inc. (SING Profile), a technology company with a focus on acquiring companies that will benefit from the injection of growth capital and technology integration. One analyst predicted the industry’s gross gaming revenue from sports betting could rise to $5 to $10 billion in five years and noted that gaming technology providers may also have an incremental $250 million to $1 billion annual sales opportunity from the trend (http://nnw.fm/IoAE5).

Entering the Social Betting World

SinglePoint has been in the daily fantasy sports arena since March 2016, when the company invested in GoDraft and DraftFury. Following this month’s Supreme Court ruling, the company announced it had invested in an additional betting platform, StakeHaul, the No. 1 social betting app in the iTunes App Store (http://nnw.fm/d4Yht). SinglePoint plans to work closely with StakeHaul, which focuses on peer-to-peer social betting, to establish a strong position in the $150 billion betting industry, SinglePoint already provides a payments option, and the two companies are working to define the use of smart contracts within the application. Smart contracts facilitate the exchange of money, property, shares, or anything of value in a transparent, conflict-free way while avoiding the services of a middleman (http://nnw.fm/fNS6B).

Until now, the social betting market has been ruled by DraftKings and FanDuel. Even before the Supreme Court decision, SinglePoint saw an opportunity to enter — and make a sizeable dent — in the huge social betting market through its investment in StakeHaul. Dubbed as the social wagering for the next generation, StakeHaul allows players to easily challenge their friends to games of skill or even be a third-party judge between mutual friends. Users can wager their hard-earned cash or even a night out on the town.

SinglePoint will work collaboratively with StakeHaul to help facilitate the opportunity of using SinglePoint’s crypto-based payment solution within the application. Having the ability to transact in crypto payments provides SinglePoint another avenue to jumpstart users transacting with bitcoin.

Opening the DFS Realm

In addition to its efforts with StakeHaul, SinglePoint will also be leveraging its investments in GoDraft and DraftFury, which now become more viable opportunities for the acquisitions company. In 2016, SinglePoint acquired an ownership stake in GoDraft.com, a Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) enterprise featuring “one of the most powerful Daily Fantasy Sports gameplay systems on the planet” (http://nnw.fm/qJb3K). Using GoDraft, players have an opportunity to win cash daily in the NFL, NBA, MLB and PGA. The system also features a referral program that rewards players with cash and credit.

At the time of the acquisition, SinglePoint CEO Greg Lambrecht noted that “GoDraft is an ideal candidate with excellent growth potential. There are 2,000-plus unique members, and they also have the only friends and private league features in the daily fantasy sports industry today, allowing you to play against people you know easier than ever before.”

SinglePoint is one of the few publicly traded companies in the United States that allows shareholders to be involved in the DFS realm, and the GoDraft acquisition marked the first in SinglePoint’s DFS rollup initiative. “With nearly 57 million people in the USA and Canada participating in fantasy sports last year, demand for participation in DFS is on the rise,” Lambrecht noted.

Huge Growth Potential

Also in 2016, SinglePoint announced that it had finalized an acquisition deal for interest in DraftFury. DraftFury has a unique seven-level referral program and an optimized interface that provides a superior gaming experience for users. With a valuation of $8 million and recognized as the first cash-flow positive DFS enterprise, DraftFury offers daily, skill-based fantasy contests for the NBA, NFL and MLB.

The system is known for its innovative offerings, and players have credited it for originality among other platforms. A case in point is the system’s Fury Arena, which uses DraftFury’s proprietary algorithm to match players of similar skill level so that players have a chance to win regardless of ability or skill.

With new regulations now in place, SinglePoint looks to these acquisitions to resume their tremendous trajectories as states throughout the nation move to legalize sports betting. “We have placed the company into multiple emerging markets that have huge growth potential,” states SinglePoint President Wil Ralston. “While we will continue to focus on cannabis and blockchain opportunities, we are excited that the Supreme Court has ruled in favor of sports betting legalization, giving the companies we have a stake in the opportunity to compete with the industry leaders again. We will continue to look for opportunity in the newly legalized sports betting arena.”

Eyeing the Potential Opportunities

SinglePoint isn’t the only organization intent on leveraging the Supreme Court decision and making the most of the lucrative opportunities now available in sports betting.

Caesars Entertainment Corporation (NASDAQ: CZR) applauded the Supreme Court decision as well. Caesars currently has licensed gaming operations in 13 states and manages a successful legal sports wagering business in Nevada. In wake of the ruling, the company plans to expand its U.S. sports betting business wherever secure and responsible wagering on sporting events is legalized. “The Supreme Court’s landmark PASPA ruling creates a golden opportunity to end illegal sports wagering once and for all by creating a well-regulated alternative that sports fans can trust,” commented the company’s president and CEO, Mark Frissora (http://nnw.fm/mo8Tq). “Caesars is a leader in legalized gaming in the U.S. As a result, we expect to be able to provide safe, exciting sports wagering experiences to consumers across the country, as we do today in Nevada.  We plan to announce our specific approach to this business as we better understand the opportunities and regulations which evolve from today’s Supreme Court decision.”

MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) also commented on the Supreme Court ruling. A May 14 press released notes that “MGM Resorts International applauds the Court’s decision to allow states the opportunity to protect consumers and benefit the public by regulating and taxing sports betting (http://nnw.fm/hwH4t).” The release stated that the company looks forward to working with legislators and policymakers to achieve a regulatory outcome that benefits states and consumers alike while ensuring the integrity of sports. IN a follow-up interview (http://nnw.fm/C0P3a) MGM CEO Jim Murren stated that the company has been waiting and planning for the day the U.S. Supreme Court allowed sports betting. “We have already established the architecture to deploy sports betting as soon as the states allow us to do that,” he said. “We have already the software. We have our mobile app called PlayMGM that is already activated in Nevada.”

Penn National Gaming Inc. (NASDAQ: PENN) owns, operates or has ownership interests in gaming and racing facilities and video gaming terminal operations with a focus on slot machine entertainment. In addition, the company is in the process of acquiring Pinnacle Entertainment for $2.8 billion in cash and stock, a deal which will add another 12 properties to its collection. Following the acquisition of Pinnacle and the planned divestiture of four of its properties to avoid regulatory challenges, Penn National will have significantly greater operational and geographic diversity and operate a combined 41 properties in 20 jurisdictions throughout North America (http://nnw.fm/ziV7I).

 Boyd Gaming Corporation (NYSE: BYD) is a leading geographically diversified operator of 24 gaming entertainment properties in seven states. Boyd currently operates 1.36 million square feet of casino space, more than 30,000 gaming machines, 630 table games, 9,400 hotel rooms and more than 280 food and beverage outlets. This month the company announced that it had entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Lattner Entertainment Group, which currently operates nearly 1,000 gaming units in 220 locations across the state of Illinois. With one of the most experienced leadership teams in the casino industry, Boyd Gaming prides itself on offering its guests an outstanding entertainment experience, delivered with unwavering attention to customer service.

Knowing that the nation’s highest court would be ruling on the case soon, savvy gaming companies such as SinglePoint have been eyeing the potential entry points and are prepared to move swiftly now that the decision has been handed down.

For more information on SinglePoint, please visit SinglePoint, Inc. (OTCQB: SING).

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