Saracen Casino Resort’s BetSaracen Becomes Second Arkansas Sports Betting App to Launch

Saracen Casino Resort’s BetSaracen Becomes Second Arkansas Sports Betting App to Launch
By Christopher Boan
Fact Checked by Michael Peters

Pine Bluff’s Saracen Casino Resort became the second operator to launch an Arkansas sports betting mobile application this week.

The operator, which previously hoped to get its mobile application in place by the opening tip of March Madness, joins Southland Casino in the state’s marketplace. 

Saracen partnered with Amelco-UK, Limited on the BetSarcen mobile application and desktop site, allowing Arkansans to have more choice in placing an online wager within the state’s boundaries.

Monday’s launch means two-thirds of the state’s casinos have a mobile wagering platform in place, with only Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort outstanding.

A representative from Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort told BetArkansas.com in late April the company’s goal was to have its application up and running early in the third quarter of the year, in time for the opening kickoff of the upcoming college football season.

Southland Casino’s Betly Arkansas site launched in March, while its Apple app debuted in late April.

A ‘First-Class, Arkansas-Based’ Application

Carlton Saffa, the chief market officer for Saracen, said in a statement to BetArkansas.com on Tuesday the company’s mobile application is truly the first of its kind in the state.

“Our Saracen Team has worked day and night for months to finally bring a first-class, Arkansas-based sports wagering app platform to the state’s many sports fans,” Saffa said in the statement.

In honor of BetSaracen’s long-awaited debut, the operator is offering new customers a chance at up to $500 in free play. The kickoff promotion will match all first-time deposits up to, but not exceeding, $500.

Where Arkansas Sports Betting Goes from Here

Earlier this year, the Arkansas Racing Commission and a legislative committee approved a rule change legalizing mobile sports betting across the state. The new rule gave each Arkansas casino two mobile platforms, called “skins,” to use under their own brand or in partnering with a national online bookmaker.

The rule grants local casinos 51% of profits when partnering with a national online bookmaker. These bookmakers typically share 10-15% in other states. Because of that rule, national platforms have stayed away from Arkansas.

But the state’s three casinos are slowly filling the mobile sports betting gap. With just one online operator available, Arkansas set a sports betting handle record in March at $10.6 million.

The fledgling mobile sports betting marketplace should receive a shot in the arm, as Arkansas Razorbacks fans will find themselves with plenty of betting opportunities.

The Razorbacks baseball team has the fourth-best national championship odds (+1400) at BetSaracen.

From there, fans can keep their eyes on September, when the Razorbacks take the gridiron in Year 3 of the Sam Pittman era. Pittman led Arkansas to a 9-4 record in 2021, guiding the Razorbacks to their first bowl game in five years and their first victory in such a game since 2015. BetSaracen has Arkansas tied for 19th in national title odds at +10000.

Then you have the Razorbacks men’s basketball team, which is among the early betting favorites to win the 2023 NCAA title, which would be the program’s first in 29 years.

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Contributors

Christopher Boan is a lead writer at BetArkansas.com specializing in covering state issues. He has covered sports and sports betting in Arizona for more than seven years, including stops at ArizonaSports.com, the Tucson Weekly and the Green Valley News.

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