Barstool Sports will be opening a bar in the River North neighborhood of Chicago, according to the company’s social media accounts.
Barstool Sportsbook is currently live in Illinois. And while this bar won’t technically be a retail sportsbook or serve as a registration hub, it will likely have a similar feel and be a popular place to bet.
READ MORE: Updates on when the bar will open
PlayPennsylvania exclusively reported the Philadelphia location of the Barstool sports bar, and now, we know the precise location of the future Chicago establishment as well.
That will be at 18 W Hubbard St. in River North at the old Henry’s Swing Club, per a Barstool Chicago Instagram story. River North sees plenty of foot traffic in the Windy City.
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We do not yet know when the sports bar will open. Penn National Gaming President and CEO Jay Snowden said on a recent earnings call:
“We anticipate launching the first two stand-alone Barstool-branded sports bars in the coming months in Philadelphia and Chicago, which will represent an extension of our omni-channel strategy to more targeted, flexible, and highly valued locations.”
How is Barstool Sportsbook doing in Illinois?
Over the past two revenue reports, Barstool has passed PointsBet in Illinois to become the fourth-most popular sportsbook in the Land of Lincoln. Barstool recorded $69.8 million in October handle.
It trails DraftKings, FanDuel and BetRivers in monthly handle by a wide margin. For context, DraftKings Sportsbook notched $315.3 million in October handle.
PointsBet also finished ahead of Barstool in revenue for the month.
With that said, Illinois policy has not been kind to Barstool. Gov. JB Pritzker reinstated in-person registration in early April just three weeks after Barstool launched on March 11. Therefore, Barstool has had far less time to register users remotely than any of its competitors.
Once online registration returns, it’s easy to envision Barstool climbing the revenue rankings. And that will happen in the coming months.
Online registration should return by March
In the fall, the Illinois House and Senate passed HB 3136. The bill gives a March 5, 2022 end date for in-person registration.
Also, three anonymous operators applied for online-only sports betting licenses. If the Illinois Gaming Board (IGB) issues a license before March 5, that will trigger a return to remote registration.
However, we should note that the IGB is not expected to issue a license before that date based on previous timelines.
Once mobile registration is back, the Illinois sports betting market will look a lot different. There will be far more sportsbooks, Barstool will be much more popular, and we might even see a $1 billion handle month this year.
For all of its twists and turns, it’s hard not to be optimistic about the future of IL sports betting.