Report: 888 to Enter Third U.S. State with SI Brand

The head of U.S. operation for 888 Holdings has identified West Virginia as the third state pegged for an imminent launch, with a skin holding the brand of Sports Illustrated.

Gibraltar-based online poker and iGaming giant 888 Holdings, already set to enter Pennsylvania and Michigan with partner, is preparing to launch an online sportsbook in a third U.S. state, West Virginia, with a skin branded to the legendary magazine Sports Illustrated.

Yaniv Sherman, senior vice president and head of U.S. operations for 888, disclosed the news in an exclusive interview with the publication Poker Industry PRO, to be published in the coming weeks. Sherman told the publication that the next product for the company in the U.S, on 888’s new Poker 8 software, will utilize a partnership with Authentic Brands Group, which owns the intellectual property for Sports Illustrated.

In late June, Sports Illustrated and 888 announced an exclusive partnership to develop Sports Illustrated online sports betting and iGaming products in the United States, including the launch of SI Sportsbook.

“We are thrilled to announce that Sports Illustrated is entering the online sports betting and iGaming space,” Authentic Brands Group founder, Chairman and CEO Jamie Salter said in announcing the partnership. “888 is one of the leaders in online betting and gaming globally and has outstanding technology, products and marketing capabilities, and we are excited to partner with them to offer an innovative product experience for sports fans.”

While online poker has been legal in West Virginia since 2019, its small population likely would require the state to enter an interstate compact to pool players. Delaware, Nevada and New Jersey currently are signatories to such an arrangement in the Multi-State Internet Gaming Agreement (MSIGA).