Unikrn Esports Cryptocurrency Betting Licensed by Isle of Man

Unikrn Isle of Man - Unikrn Cryptocurrency Betting - Unicorn Esports

Tabcorp, Binary Capital, Mark Cuban, and Ashton Kutcher invested in Unikrn.

Unikrn, a Las Vegas-based betting platform which began in the state of Washington as an eSports social gaming site, received a cryptocurrency gambling license for eSports from the Isle of Man. Unikrn already had a betting license from the United Kingdom and Australila.

The license from the Isle of Man allows Unikrn to offer cryptocurrency betting on skill-based pro video game events using the UnikoinGold token, an inhouse currency the site has used since 2014. The license also applies to traditional currencies like the U.S. dollar, British pound, and Euro.

Isle of Man’s license gives the company the ability to offer bets on eSports matches in 20 different regions worldwide. The key implication is the potential access it gives Unikorn to the U.S. sports betting market.

The US Supreme Court decision in May to repeal the PASPA federal ban on sports betting means US states are free to legalize several types of sports betting, including wagers on eSports events.

What Is Electronic Sports?

Electronic sports or eSports is the term used to describe organized video game tournaments featuring professional individuals or teams. Esports events draw live crowds comparable to MLS soccer, pro boxing, or UFC fights.

Top tournaments are live streamed on Twitch and broadcast on cable television with their own pre-game shows, broadcast crews, and studio analysis. Posted videos of top eSports events receive large viewership on YouTube and Twitch, while eSports stars have their own large followings on social media sites.

Esports Competitors vs. Sports Athletes

In most ways, then, eSports is like professional sports. Most global regulators view eSports betting no different than wagering on traditional sporting events. Bookmakers, hoping to lure in millennial gamblers, have pushed for pro-eSports betting laws in the United States and beyond.

Two years ago, Nevada legalized land-based sports betting on eSports, while a handful of Las Vegas casinos have added their own eSports studios to cater to fans. Last year, the Nevada Gaming Commission allowed parlays bets on eSports events, a rules change which brought eSports betting in line with other forms of sportsbook bets in Nevada.

New Jersey Ban on Esports Betting

The immediate problem for Unikrn is the legalization process in the United States. To offer legal eSports bets, an individual US state must legalize eSports wagers. One might think such decisions would be automatic in the current environment, but New Jersey’s recent legislation is a sign that betting on video game competitions still needs to gain acceptance.

When New Jersey passed its single-game sports betting law in June 2018, its legislators suprisingly left eSports wagers on the list of banned activities. At first, many in the gaming media speculated the decision was a simple oversight. Months later, it is obvious that New Jersey lawsmakers wanted to ban eSports outright.

Mississippi, West Virginia, and Delaware passed single-game sports betting laws in the past few months which allow eSports betting. Unikrn thus is in a position to offer its cryptocurrency skill-based eSports betting product in those states. If that happens, Unikrn likely would sign partnership deals with casino operators in each state.

About Unikrn

Unikrn was launched in 2014 by Rahul Sood, a former executive at Microsoft and Hewlett Packard and founder of VoodooPC. With an impressive list of investors, Sood launched Unikrn as an Ethereum-based cryptocurrency wagering site for eSports. While Unikoins can only be used to purchase merchandise in the United States, the Unikrn website allows full sports betting in the UK and Australia.

In the years since, Unikrn has gained wider acceptance. After Nevada changed its gaming laws, Unikrn moved to Las Vegas and signed partnership deals with the D Las Vegas Hotel and Casino. It was announced in October 2017 that Rahul Sood had talked with Macau casinos about partnerships, though eSports betting remains banned in China.

Despite that, Unikrn continues to grow along with the international eSports industry. In 2017, the combined prize pool for all global eSports circuits topped $93 million and the trend lines over the past 5 years have shown constant year-to-year growth. Earlier this year, Epic Games announced it would spend $100 million in seed cash to found a Fortnite eSports circuit. Most top professional eSports teams are expected to field squads for the Fortnite circuit.