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Illinois Gaming Market

Liquor License Roadblocks: Presenting a Case for Your Liquor License

January 11, 2019

A large portion of Accel’s employees spend their time working directly with gaming establishment owners, or in the case of today’s employee highlight, aspiring establishment owners. If you’ve called Accel looking to get more information about either adding gaming to your existing business or starting from scratch to create a gaming establishment, you may have talked to Maggie.

Maggie’s an expert in this area, and a great resource for both our clients and those looking to understand what’s required to get started in the market. We checked in with Maggie recently to see what’s happening in the market, and the majority of our discussion centered around aspiring entrepreneurs who want to open up a new gaming establishment. More often than not, these individuals are interested in opening a gaming parlor, and many of the individuals she’s spoken to recently are at the crucial, sometimes difficult, step of obtaining a liquor license - and they’re stuck.

In our guide, 7 Steps to Becoming an Illinois Video Gaming Establishment, we mention in step two that you must either qualify as a truck stop or have an on-premise liquor license in order to become a licensed gaming establishment. In our blog, How to Get a Liquor License in Illinois, we cover the steps to getting a liquor license. These steps cover the more straightforward process, but they don’t really get into potential road blocks that can arise, such as a municipality that is limiting the availability of liquor licenses.

Effects of Video Gaming on IllinoisIf you’re having difficulty obtaining a liquor license due to roadblocks at your municipality level, Maggie says it may be worthwhile to see if you can work with your municipality directly and convince them of the benefits your specific business can bring to the area should you be granted a license. In some cases, they may be willing to make an exception for your business. Accel team members, including Maggie, work directly with gaming entrepreneurs to help them build their case, and many times accompany them to present it to their municipality. Maggie says it’s key to demonstrate the projected municipality share (she works closely with our data analytics team to develop projections) and to present a solid business structure.

Step number one, of course, is figuring out how to get in front of your municipality to plead your case. This is where Maggie’s expertise really comes into play. She works constantly to understand what’s going on in each municipality in relation to the gaming market. It changes often, and guidelines become outdated quickly.

Each business is different and each entrepreneur may (and likely will) run into different roadblocks on the way to establishing their business. This is why people like Maggie work at Accel, to help move past the roadblocks. Having experienced them before, she can use her expertise to help solve problems and assist in getting you on your way to becoming a gaming licensee.

If you're interested in learning more about this, or if you're stuck yourself, you can call Maggie (she's really nice)! Her number is 866-525-8504.

Want to learn more about getting your liquor license in Illinois? Check out our guide here.