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American Wagering lets BlackBerry users in Nevada place sports bets

American Wagering Inc. subsidiary Leroy’s Sportsbook has launched a sports betting application for Research In Motion’s BlackBerry just in time for football season.

The application lets users legally bet on sports anywhere in the state of Nevada on their BlackBerry mobile phones. The application was developed with Leroy’s sister company Computerized Bookmaking Systems Inc. and with the help of BlackBerry’s sports division.

“The application itself was born out of convenience for our customers,” said John English, senior vice president at American Wagering, Las Vegas. “Sports betting is only legal within the state borders of Nevada, so we had to develop the app with geolocation to verify where the phone is, as the bets that are placed have to be within the state of Nevada.

“The application provides a convenient way for our customers to place bets within the state, no matter where they are,” he said. “They don’t have to be within the casino—they can be anywhere they want to be.

“The new wave of mobile technology enables the ultimate in convenience.”

American Wagering is a publicly-traded company that primarily operates through wholly-owned subsidiaries, including Leroy’s Horse & Sports Place Inc., Computerized Bookmaking Systems, AWI Manufacturing Inc. and AWI Gaming Inc.

Leroy’s owns and operates more than 58 race/sports book outlets in the state of Nevada.

A new era of mobile wagering
The Nevada Gaming Control Board recently approved the Leroy’s application. It is currently available to BlackBerry users on Sprint, AT&T and T-Mobile, with other wireless carriers coming soon.

Leroy’s collaborates with the carriers on a network-based location system to validate that application users are in the state of Nevada.

Leroy’s claims this is the first mobile phone betting application to be approved in Nevada.

The company spent more than a year planning and developing the new application.

Mr. English said that the Nevada Gaming Control Board scrutinized the project with a very thorough lab investigation, which helped Leroy’s establish stringent security features.

The application offers an array of sports bets, including straight bets, parlays, teasers, in-game betting, contests and scores.

Leroy’s plans to unveil new applications in the coming months for the iPhone, Android and Windows-based mobile phones.

Leroy’s also plans to add race book and fantasy sports features.

To get the word out about the application, Leroy’s is running television commercials, and there are billboards promoting the application around Las Vegas and all over the state of Nevada.

In addition, Leroy’s is using social media such as Twitter and Facebook to spread the word virally.

“Leroy’s has a bricks-and-mortar presence with more than 60 locations where customers have to show ID to prove that they are 21-plus and open an account,” Mr. English said. “Once they’ve done so they can go to and get the link off of the Web site or we can email them the link to download the app, and from there they can wager at will.

“They cannot activate the app until they have an approved account, but it’s not a complicated process,” he said. “They fill out a one-page application with us.

“We’re currently looking at all the smartphone platforms, are we’re optimistic that we’ll launch apps for them as well in the near future.”

Final Take
Dan Butcher, associate editor, Mobile Commerce Daily