Cantor Entertainment Technology (CET), an arm of the Cantor Fitzgerald Empire which is the parent of Cantor Index Ltd, could become a major player in sports betting in the United States if the Professional Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) is circumvented. Several states desirous of tax revenue are challenging or considering challenging the Act, which confines sports betting to the four states of Delaware, Oregon, Montana and Nevada. This would be a major expansion for Cantor, which is currently heavily invested in spread betting in the United Kingdom for which spread betting trial accounts are offered for free.
What The News is Saying
In June last year, Bloomberg Magazine examined the impact Cantor could have under the colourful and competitive leadership of CET’s CEO, Lee Amaitis. Amaitis was quoted saying that he intended to transform Cantor into a powerhouse of sports gambling and that “We came here to change the face of the industry.”
CET invested $150 million in Las Vegas. The company was a pioneer of “on premises” wagering in the casino resorts of Las Vegas using wireless technology and handheld devices. Cantor placed advertisements in taxis in Las Vegas which featured the rear of a curvaceous woman accompanied by a tag line of, “Sports betting on your Android? You bet your app!” Online poker is envisioned in Nevada. Half of the market in Nevada is presently controlled by the giants, MGM Resorts and Caesars Entertainment.
Innovation is Key
Cantor Fitzgerald chief, Howard Lutnick, the boss of CET’s boss, supported a move into gambling, saying that the introduction of such a great amount of technological innovation to the market was a wonderful opportunity he believed would drastically increase the market’s size.
Amaitis claimed that Cantor’s technology had boosted sports betting in Nevada and was partly responsible for the $311 million (£192 million) increase in wagers between 2009 and 2011. He believes Congress will mute the PASPA. His rival, Joseph Asher of Brandywine Bookmaking, which was recently acquired by the bookmaker, William Hill, said he thought there was no doubt that one day sports betting would be legal and commonplace in the United States while presently it is just commonplace. Asher was a senior executive of Cantor Entertainment until he departed in 2008 to establish Brandywine Bookmaking. He has an acrimonious relationship with Amaitis, and there have been multiple court cases between the pair’s employers.
Amaitis became aware of the potential of sports betting in 1996 when he worked at a Cantor office in London and witnessed a client playing internet poker and trading bonds. He was part of Cantor Index’s financial spread betting business.