AceShowbiz - Jay-Z is reportedly planning to launch an online sports betting company in New York.
The music mogul and Roc Nation founder has partnered with Fanatics - the world's largest provider of officially licensed sports merchandise - to create a new betting company as the New York State Gaming Commission prepares to open up the industry next year.
According to Page Six, Jay-Z will serve as vice chairman and join the board of directors of a new Fanatics Betting & Gaming entity. His role as an executive was revealed in redacted documents released last week by the New York State Gaming Commission, but his name as a potential licence holder was blacked out.
The New York online sportsbooks - places where a gambler can bet on various competitions, including golf, football, basketball, baseball, ice hockey, soccer, horse racing, greyhound racing, boxing, and mixed martial arts - would launch in early 2022, and the bids would be chosen by December (22). According to reports, the gaming commission must select at least two of the groups vying for the licenses.
Other groups in the running are FanDuel, DraftKings, Bally's, BetMGM, and Caesars Sportsbook.
The "Empire State of Mind" rapper appears to have an edge since he's the highest profile bidder and has close ties to New York.
A source told Page Six, "He's a native New Yorker, and Roc Nation is a diverse company. Jay-Z is New York."
Last week (ends13Aug21), it was announced JAY-Z and Roc Nation were among new investors in sports apparel giant Fanatics. According to Bloomberg, Michael G. Rubin, the executive chairman of the sports retail company, is seeking to branch out into gaming, ticketing and media.
The documents obtained by Page Six also suggest Jay-Z and Roc Nation would "help (Fanatics' gaming division) attract new customers, engage existing sports bettors and expand the overall footprint of the Fanatics sportsbook."
Fanatics bosses working in partnership with the "Big Pimpin' " hitmaker would be headquartered in New York City before expanding their business to other cities.