Can I Really Start My Own Sportsbook From Kentucky?

Written by:
Aaron Goldstein
Published on:

Kentucky has been home to bookies since the commonwealth first came into existence.  After all, this is the world's second oldest profession.


Fast forward to 2023 and Kentucky became the last in this particular region to begin regulating and licensing sportsbooks.  Mobile betting sites were set to launch in the coming days.

As an existing bookie operating in the state, if you're thinking about packing it up you're likely one of those who simply cannot keep up with technology and perhaps still taking bets by hand on just football and basketball.  There's a reason why you are losing customers and it has little to do with the emerging regulated sports gambling industry in the US.  Quite the contrary.

More and more folks will be wanting to place bets once all those commercials start airing locally.  We would argue this has never been a better time to start a sportsbook in the commonwealth of Kentucky.

So you only know of three other people who bet on sports?  Not a problem.  Pay Per Head companies like AcePerHead do all the legwork in terms of providing an online website, offering odds and providing customer support.  Those three buddies of yours may have more friends who will come under your umbrella as seasoned bookies make money through word of mouth. As our friends at AcePerHead point out "The House Always Wins". 

You'll be paying a small weekly fee per customer.  AcePerHead even offers a FREE week every month.

What Makes Kentucky So Enticing for Bookies

The commonwealth is home to some solid college programs that include the Louisville Cardinals and Kentucky Wildcats.  The WKU Hilltoppers may be a smaller less nationally known team but they still have a loyal fan base.  Kentucky is a great state for bookmakers and bettors in that college basketball is huge here.  When football ends, that signals to the KY bookie that March Madness is right around the corner.

Gamblers also love the anonymity and ability to bet on credit that a local bookie provides and the state regulated apps will not.

Two weeks of legal sports betting in Kentucky has resulted in over $4.5M in betting at the land-based sportsbooks while more than 60,000 accounts have been pre-registered with the mobile sites that have obtained licensing in the commonwealth.   That's pretty sick and, guess what?  A good chunk of these customers won't be sticking around.  The regulated books have developed a deserving reputation for limiting and outright booting winning gamblers.

They won't keep winning.  These customers are yours to have once you start your online sportsbook.

Kentucky is one of the few states that allow those 18 and up.  This means bookies won't have a monopoly on college age adults in the commonwealth.

When it comes to taxes, it's always best for YOU and ONLY YOU to work with an accountant.  Using a regulated book means your winnings will be reported BY THEM to the IRS.

Kentucky's sports betting legislation states that all gambling winnings are subject to income tax withholding at a rate of 6%. Additionally, a federal tax of 25% is tacked onto winnings in excess of $5,000. 

Many Pay Per Heads will offer a side gig in the form of a race book and live dealer online casino, usually at no additional charge.

- Aaron Goldstein,

Gambling News