Betr Acquires Virginia Sports Betting License, Becomes 16th Sportsbook

Written By Adam Hensley on March 9, 2023
virginia sports betting jake paul betr license approved

Betr, a microbetting company, just acquired a sports betting license in Virginia.

The Virginia Lottery approved the VA sports betting license on Monday.

“We’re thrilled to receive approval for our sports betting license in Virginia, and appreciate the seamless work with the Virginia Lottery Board to bring our product to customers in Virginia,” Joey Levy, Betr co-founder and CEO said in a release.

The company, co-founded by social media influencer Jake Paul, did not disclose a specific launch date in Virginia. It did, however, note that its app will be ready for users “soon.”

Influencer Jake Paul one of Betr’s co-founders

Despite being one of the latest sportsbooks to hit the market, Betr commands one of the sports industry’s biggest names: Jake Paul.

The 26-year-old social-media-influencer-turned-boxer partnered with Levy to found the company.

Paul originally rose to fame with Vine, the six-seconds-or-less social media platform. From there he found success on YouTube before transitioning to the boxing scene. Paul recently suffered his first defeat as a professional boxer to Tommy Fury.

Paul views Betr as just another venture in his growing empire. In an interview with New York Magazine, the celebrity proclaimed his high hopes for not only Betr but his future as a whole.

“I fully believe I’ll be the Jay-Z of this generation and this will be a billion-dollar company — my first billion-dollar company,” Paul said. “This is what I love. I’m a Capricorn; I was built to work.”

Levy, meanwhile, touts a gambling background himself. He founded Simplebet. The company creates back-end software for micro-betting platforms.

Betr recently launced its microbetting app in Ohio

As Ohio officially launched sports betting in January, Betr’s arrival followed suit. The new sports betting platform generated a profit during that month in the Buckeye State.

It makes sense that Ohio was one of Betr’s first launches. Not only is Paul an Ohio native, but the launch cames as the state’s industry as a whole started the new chapter.

“This (Ohio) launch marks the beginning of our gradual, methodical approach to state-by-state expansion where we will take the time necessary to discover and validate product-market-fit of our highly differentiated product experience to ensure we scale in a profitable manner,” Levy said in a statement at the time of the Ohio launch.

In addition to Ohio, Betr previously secured a license in Massachusetts. It appears Indiana is next on its list, as it boasts market access but no license just yet from the Indiana Gaming Commission. Now, Betr become the 16th sportsbook to enter Virginia.

“This is an important milestone for us and we can’t wait to bring our differentiated product experience to sports fans throughout Virginia,” Levy said in a statement.

What is microbetting?

To put it simply, microbetting is live gambling while a game is taking place. These bets are often quick. So, instead of betting on the game’s spread, these live, in-game bets could be on a quarter’s spread or a player prop. Microbetting is a new change of pace from the idea of traditional casino wagering.

Microbetting happens typically within the moment. And that’s something Paul and Levy want to capitalize on.

In his interview with New York Magazine, Paul coined the phrase “TikTokification.” Much like the fast-paced social media platform Paul referenced, Betr provides users with a quick betting experience in real time.

Levy thinks this new wave of betting could resemble the success stock market platforms like Robinhood enjoyed.

“It’s kind of like what Robinhood did to day-trading,” Levy told the publication. “Ten years ago, E-Trade, Fidelity, Charles Schwab were the main day-trading apps. But the mass-market consumer was not engaged in day-trading because it was not intuitive for the normal person. Robinhood created a really simple intuitive user experience to enable people to seamlessly buy and sell stocks.”

Betr secures Virginia sports betting license at prime time

Virginia’s January report shows the state ranks sixth nationally in sports betting handle for the month — an encouraging sign for the industry.

Virginia sports bettors wagered $513.15 million that month. That resulted in $42.13 million in adjusted gross revenue, which produced $6.37 million in taxes.

The state’s gambling industry as a whole is primed for growth. Two functional casinos call Virginia home. One of them, located in Bristol, is temporary, but plans to open fully in about a year. Meanwhile, battles over additional casino locations dominate local headlines.

Point being, there’s a demand for gambling within the state. And Betr’s license comes at a perfect time.

Photo by Ashley Landis / AP Photo
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Adam Hensley

Adam Hensley is a journalist from Des Moines, Iowa. His byline has appeared in the Associated Press, Sports Illustrated and sites within the USA Today Network. Hensley graduated from the University of Iowa in 2019 and spent his college career working for the Daily Iowan’s sports department, both as an editor and reporter.

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