The Betly online platform is a relative sportsbook newcomer, having made its U.S. debut in 2020. But the up-and-coming Betly Sportsbook is fueled by a hospitality and entertainment industry heavyweight, Buffalo, New York-based Delaware North Companies.
Betly is expected to be one of the two dozen sportsbook apps to operate statewide in Ohio once sports betting launches on Jan. 1, 2023.
Here’s a look at what we know so far about Betly Sportsbook Ohio and what Ohioans can expect from the sportsbook app, which should be branded as MVGBet Sportsbook.
Delaware North developed its own online sportsbook, Betly
Betly’s online sports betting platform and app are the product of Gamewise, a joint venture between Delaware North Companies and Belgian gaming and sports betting company GAMING1. The companies teamed up in 2021 to form Gamewise, described as “a turnkey digital gaming solutions provider” for operators in North America.
Betly currently operates in three other states — Arkansas, Tennessee and West Virginia. In each state, Betly is partnered with Delaware North owned-and-operated casino racetracks.
In Ohio, Betly will partner with another Delaware North entity, Miami Valley Gaming, a racino located in Lebanon, Ohio, between Cincinnati and Dayton. Along with its online sportsbook application with Betly, Miami Valley Gaming, which features a live harness racing track and extensive casino gaming offerings, has also applied for a retail sports betting license in Ohio.
Delaware North Companies co-owns Miami Valley Gaming with Louisville, Kentucky’s Churchill Downs Inc.
Betly Ohio Sportsbook strives to be fun, user-friendly
Delaware North originally entered West Virginia’s mobile betting app market in late 2018 with its since-shuttered BetLucky app. In 2020, West Virginia was the first market in which Betly launched after BetLucky went offline in 2019 following legal tussles with Delaware North’s development partners at the time.
The West Virginia Betly launch was followed two years later by the introduction of the Gamewise-created Betly app in Arkansas and Tennessee.
“We strived to make Betly very fun, user-friendly and unintimidating as an ideal first experience for people wanting to get into sports betting,” Luisa Woods, vice president of marketing for Delaware North’s Gaming division, said when Betly became the first legal online sportsbook in Arkansas in spring of 2022.
“Its innovative features are specifically designed to engage and entertain sports fans, but we use familiar terminology and aren’t pushing high-dollar offers that can scare casual sports fans away.”
Betly sports betting app is functional, no flash
Like its basic desktop browser sites, Betly’s sportsbook apps, available for iOS and Android, are very straightforward without a lot of bells and whistles. The app is clearly geared toward beginners and casual users.
Betly’s promotional slogan at betly.com, “Bet with one hand, in your own backyard,” is featured next to a photo of a man excitedly betting on his smartphone while also doing yard work. For such ambitious multitasking, you’re going to want to have a pretty streamlined app for your sports betting needs.
The two apps available to bettors in West Virginia (one tied to Wheeling Island Casino and one connected with Mardi Gras Casino) are visually stark and the listings for the various bets often feature chunky, hard-to-read text, stacked on top of each other. It’s operational, just not very pretty.
The state-specific apps for Arkansas and Tennessee are Betly’s most recent products, so they are probably more like what Ohio bettors will see. They are much more visually appealing, with bright green highlights catching the eye within the easy-to-read white-on-grey baseline aesthetic.
The bare-bones interface in general isn’t hyper-intuitive. Betly spotlights the most popular sports upfront (from baseball, football and hockey to tennis, boxing and an array of international soccer) but it can take some digging around when searching for certain events (for instance, NASCAR betting lines were unavailable the day before a recent race).
Betly offers users the opportunity to place straight single bets, but users can also combine multiple bets, with parlay and round robin bets, to increase odds and boost winnings.
Betly’s banking options are similarly bare-bones. For deposits and withdrawals, Betly users are limited to using Play+ when betting online. Users also have the option to deposit and withdraw funds in person at the app’s brick-and-mortar casino partners.
Betly welcome promo offers risk-free bets
Betly has featured a couple of different introductory promotional offers for first-time users in its different markets. Ohio bettors can likely expect something similar.
In West Virginia, the welcome offer is called “$100 Risk-Free Winning Streak.” With their first loss, new bettors receive a free bet of up to $100.
The offer differs from some similar promos in that Betly does not limit the offer to new users’ first bet. A newcomer can rack up a nice winning streak on their first several bets but lose, for example, on their seventh Betly bet. The promo wipes out the amount lost (up to $100) with a free bet award no matter when the first loss occurs. Users must use the free bet credit within 30 days of receiving it.
Betly’s “risk-free” offers in Tennessee and Arkansas are more in line with standard introductory sportsbook welcome offers, in that it is only good on a new user’s first bet. But the offer also pays a higher amount of free bet credits than Betly’s offer in West Virginia.
If a new user’s first Betly wager is a loss, Betly’s “$250 Risk-Free First Bet” lets new users recoup the amount of the loss in the form of a free bet award added to their account.
To claim the offer, new users select the “$250 Risk-Free First Bet” offer when making their first deposit. The first wager must be of $10 or more on a selection with odds of -250 or greater. Users must use the free bet credit within seven days of receiving it.
Betly doesn’t have many other promotions. There is a very basic loyalty rewards program for frequent users (check out the “Store” tab for details). Two other ongoing offers are all about the “boosts.”
The Profit Boost area offers a selection of events and bets that can be used to increase winnings (like a 15% MLB player boost or a 25% 3+ team/player parlay boost). The Odds Boost offer gives higher odds for a variety of moneyline and prop bet parlays.