Unikrn paves the way for esports betting in the US
The Seattle-based esports betting company, Unikrn, recently hit the headlines when it was announced that they had received a license that permits them to facilitate live esports betting in a wide variety of territories around the world. What’s particularly significant about this ruling is the fact that it could soon allow gamers in the US to place bets on their own gaming performances.
Unikrn gained a gambling license from the Isle of Man, and it quickly made moves to implement its esports betting service in 20 different countries across Europe and Asia. Whilst the brand has some time to wait before it can fully introduce esports betting into the US, it’s clear that this move has the potential to transform the way that millions of gamers can enjoy wagering on top esports like Counter Strike Global Offensive, League of Legends and Fortnite.
Key points of Unikrn’s latest moves
Unikrn had previously been legally allowed to facilitate real-money esports betting in nations like the UK and Australia. But the fact that the brand have received an Isle of Man gambling license means that Unikrn are well placed to take advantage of measures made to remove online gambling regulation in many new markets include the US.
What’s significant about Unikrn’s esports betting service, is that it allows customers to make skill-based bets. This means that any customer can wager on their own gaming abilities in titles like PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. As long as the customer is of legal age to gamble in their country of residence, they will then be able to link their favourite esport to the Unikrn website and then the betting site will offer odds for the player’s chances of winning based on their previous performances within the game.
Customers will then be able to place bets on their own performances, and then either play well enough to pick up their winnings, or come back for more. This opens up a whole new way to enjoy esports betting, and plans are already afoot to roll out this service in 41 states in the US, although the exact date for this project hasn’t been decided yet.
All about Unikrn’s rise to power
Unikrn have only been around since 2014, but this Seattle-based esports betting company has already made a big splash in this rapidly expanding market. Thanks to the investment of several high-profile individuals like the actor, Ashton Kutcher, the business executive, Elisabeth Murdoch, and the Dallas Mavericks owner, Mark Cuban, Unikrn has become one of the most promising esports betting brand names in the US. A key part of Unikrn’s PR campaign is the fact that it is the first betting site in the world to be completely built on blockchain technology to offer a fully decentralised and verifiable ledger of transactions.
With partnerships with technology brands like HP and Razer, as well as investments in the PC manufacturer, MAINGEAR, we have seen the Unikrn brand name become a key player in the esports scene. Nowhere was this better witnessed than the brand’s decision to team up with MGM Resorts International to host esports tournaments in Las Vegas.
In addition to this, Unikrn has also actively promoted the endeavours of the Esports Integrity Coalition who pledge to standardise and regulate the competitive gaming activity to stamp out troubling allegations of match-fixing. Whilst the brand might have courted a degree of controversy through the unveiling of their UnikoinGold cryptocurrency that was viewed in some quarters to have been offering unregistered securities to the public, it has brushed off such accusations and looks to capitalise on their strong position in the marketplace.
Why has esports betting in the US proved to be so difficult?
Whilst Unikrn’s esports venue at the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas allows customers to bet on their own performances in video gaming tournaments, the brand look to have a much tougher time in rolling out their services across the rest of the nation. At the moment, Nevada is one of the handful of US states that allows sports betting that includes options for wagering on esports.
This is because the US government has traditionally been opposed to most forms of gambling, but there have been recent moves to overturn such legislation. Earlier this summer, the Supreme Court made the shock decision to allow certain states to facilitate licensed sports betting. Although the number of licenses and planned start date of this process have yet to be unveiled, it’s clear that it could be a hugely lucrative market.
The head of Unikrn, Rahul Sood, has gone on record as saying that the esports betting industry could be a $9 billion industry by 2020 if the necessary deregulation is carried through. All of which points to a bright future for esports betting.