Former MGM Resorts International VP of Race & Sports, Jay Rood, has a new gig. In a surprise to many in the sports betting industry, Rood’s new job isn’t another brick and mortar casino operator. He is now the Chief Risk Officer for Bet.Works.
What is Bet.Works?
Bet.Works is a US-based iGaming and sportsbook platform supplier. The company’s main service is to provide business-to-business (B2B) solutions for online gambling and online sports betting operators. They also offer a variety of services for retail casino sportsbooks.
If all goes well for Bet.Works, bettors should rarely (if ever) hear their name. They offer technology services for sportsbook operators similar to Kambi in New Jersey. In Nevada, Stadium Technology provides many similar backend solutions for various sportsbooks. Similar to Bet.Works, Stadium Technology provides all services for some sportsbook operators like the new Circa Sports.
Bet.Works’ platform is one of three companies to be fully certified by every US testing lab (GLI, etc.). This makes it easy for regulators to approve them in new markets. Depending on the jurisdiction they might not even have to be approved.
Bet.Works can provide as many or as few of the following services for a sportsbook operator:
- Compliance – Transaction recording and reporting
- Hosting – Data hosting
- Integrity – Protection for sportsbook, customer, leagues, etc.
- Customer Service – Customer support for partners and customers
- On-Property management – Manage retail sportsbooks
- Risk Management – Enter Jay Rood
Bet.Works’ first client in the US should be theScore online sportsbook in New Jersey. The mobile wagering app will debut in New Jersey soon. Rood tells TheLines that theScore will create the face of their sports betting app while Bet.Works will take care of other areas of the business.
During his interview with Matt Brown on TheLines Podcast, Rood mentioned that Bet.Works has a deal in place with a casino in Iowa to launch online and retail sports betting by football season. He also says that they continue to look for new clients. For the time being, Bet.Works does not have plans to work with any Nevada sportsbooks.
Who is Jay Rood and why does this matter?
Rood worked in sports betting for MGM Resorts International for 25 years. He started as a ticket writer and moved up the corporate ladder over the years. By the time he parted ways with MGM Resorts earlier this year, he was overseeing 10 sportsbooks in Nevada, one in New Jersey, and two in Mississippi.
He’s also the creator of one of the most fun March Madness bets in Las Vegas – 1st team to 15 points.
Scenes from Sin City: And Iona is First to 15 vs. North Carolina, sending bettors of that prop, at +400, into a frenzy at @MandalayBay sportsbook. Gotta love @MGMRaceSports’ #MarchMadness prop bet menu! @Covers pic.twitter.com/L1eUWqYijy
— Patrick Everson (@Covers_Vegas) March 23, 2019
Even though his job is in risk management, Rood told Gill Alexander at VSiN that he intends to bring the concept with him to Bet.Works.
Rood tells TheLines that his risk management job at Bet.Works will include setting prices and advising their customers on their betting menu options. The risk management part of his job, in part, will be to discuss big bets with leadership at different sportsbook operators. He’ll pay attention to all big bets for all clients.
Everything Rood does for Bet.Works will be custom tailored to each client. Sports bettors in New Jersey and Iowa should be a little different.
Rood says that the rapid growth in New Jersey sports betting handle should continue. Unlike Nevada, they’re allowing sports bettors to sign up for mobile sports betting apps without visiting a retail sportsbook. This allows interested bettors quick and easy access to place bets on sports.
The current system in Nevada is set up to draw people into casinos. This allows the casino operators to generate revenue in the sportsbook along with casino games, dining, etc.
What about MGM Resorts Sportsbooks?
Rood’s departure came during a lull in sports betting expansion across America. MGM Resorts has spent the last year getting ready for mass expansion. Since the expansion into new states hasn’t been quick this year this was a good time for the two to part ways.
MGM Resorts will undergo a major change with their sportsbook operations this year. They will convert their sports betting products with their joint venture with GVC Holdings called Roar Digital. Had he stayed at MGM Resorts, Rood’s job would have been something entirely different.
Rood told TheLines that he decided to leave MGM Resorts at this time to make the transition easier for the company. He went onto say that this timing worked well so that he could find a job that would be more appropriate for his skills. Bet.Works is that perfect match.
MGM Resorts has already launched a new platform using its new Roar Digital with new Borgata sportsbook app in New Jersey. Roar Digital recently received approval from the Nevada Gaming Control Board will launch later this year.