This sportsbook is also offline
The World Sports Exchange (WSEX) went offline in April 2013 after a history that justified SBR’s F rating. There were at least one million dollars in unpaid accounts and many customers lost their money. WSEX were pioneers in online sports betting, but ultimately they were not to be trusted. To avoid this type of insecure sports betting sites, please check out our best sportsbooks list.
Here is a review of WSEX which indicates why the book closed and the reasoning behind the rating.
New and existing customers of WSEX enjoyed the benefits like welcome bonuses and reload bonuses. The company was founded in 1997 by Jay Cohen and Steve Schillinger who worked in trading options and derivatives. The business received plenty of positive media attention which highlighted the benefits of opening an account and depositing betting funds. Potential new customers were enticed with bonuses. These are still part of the online sports betting industry and the best ones are described on the SBR sportsbook bonuses page.
Jay Cohen was charged with 1961 Wire Act violations. He took his case to trial but lost and was sentenced in 2002 to 21 months in prison. WSEX was growing into one of the most popular sportsbooks in the world, and reload bonuses were offered as part of a loyalty program. Cohen began to manage the sportsbook from Antigua.
WSEX accepted payments using the standard methods of credit and debit cards, Wire Transfer and the early e-Wallets. Providing offshore gambling for US citizens was made illegal in 2006. However, WSEX continued to accept payments from residents of the United States. SBR downgraded WSEX from A+ to C in 2008, which was a warning sign that was not heeded.
There were delays in the processing of payments and the amount of slow plays continued to increase. However, WSEX were using deposits from newer players to settle longer-standing accounts. The sportsbook offered bonuses related to major sporting events, such as the NFL Super Bowl.
It became a sorry tale of players being owed money. WSEX should have been avoided. Prompt payments are vital for a sportsbook to gain trust, and top gambling sites such as BetOnline and Bovada score well in this area.
Sports Betting Experience
There was no denying that customers with WSEX enjoyed a positive sports betting experience. The site featured lines for the main professional sports in the United States and global sports like soccer, boxing, golf and tennis. However, a lack of capital resources forced WSEX out of business in April 2013.
There were reports of unpaid final salaries and players who were owed over $1 million. Despite the range of sports and markets, WSEX will be remembered for stiffing players and soliciting new customers with inducements.
Schillinger has passed away and Cohen is keeping a low profile. There are still disgruntled customers owed money and one individual is looking to sue. Existing operators value their customers and provide excellent support, including Justbet, which makes prompt and accurate payments.
WSEX went out of business owing customers money and solicited new players towards the end. They could not have a much poorer reputation and the SBR rating of F remains in place.
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Haden Ware, a co-founder of now defunct World Sports Exchange (WSEX), was sentenced to six months probation today in Manhattan federal court. Ware was on the lam for over 13 years as a fugitive for his involvement with WSEX. The online sportsbook unceremoniously went off-line without paying well over $1 million to players.Read More
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2009 – 2010: WSEX debt crosses $250,000 mark
The once well established business was lowered from A- to B+ in April of 2009 when the first signs of payout problems surfaced. Six months later, in October of 2009, WSEX was downgraded to C after the average payout time-frame increased from four to six weeks. At the time, seven players had complaints on file for $30,000. Fast forwarding to March of 2010, WSEX players were owed $43,000. A good deal of controversy was created when management admitted that payout size determined priority in the payouts queue. As news continued to break on the slow service and financial problems, more players decided to request their funds and consequently the delinquent amount reported to SBR quadrupled to $184,104. Three players reported receiving $9,000 in June of 2010, although this came as a virtual drop in the bucket as the debt approached a quarter million dollars. One month later, a $2,000 payment was confirmed as received by an SBR reader while five new complaints rolled in and the debt rose to $260,534. During this time the online sportsbooks’ wagering department got froggy; a player reported that WSEX refused to honor a winning $20,000 “Who will sign Lebron?” NBA prop after his trade to the Miami Heat. It seems to players that the sportsbook may have regained its footing when approximately half of their debt was paid with 36 players confirming receiving $124,617 in withdrawals during week four of the NFL season. Unfortunately as the football season winded down, WSEX closed the year owing close to $200,000.
2011 – 2012: WSEX debt rises
The first week of the new year in 2011 saw Matchbook’s new ownership announce their official separation from World Sports Exchange. WSEX previously had an ownership stake in Matchbook since their 2005 launch. Despite WSEX’s stake in the betting website, Matchbook paid their customers on time and were unaffected by WSEX’s issues. Near the end of Q1 2011, WSEX players were owed $438,860. By Christmas 2011, a total of 110 players reported being owed $653,000. On January 24, 2012, WSEX outraged players by releasing a statement shifting blame of their financial predicament onto gaming laws in the US. The statement seemed to be the first sign of a white flag and WSEX continued to dishonestly advertise a payout time-frame of 7 business days on their website. By mid 2012, WSEX owed $825,744. A sportsbook scam alert was issued in October of 2010 when WSEX mailed players deposit bonus offers for the upcoming NBA season despite being blacklisted and unable to pay. This was also covered in a sportsbook news video with newswoman Natalie and then co-host “Justin7”.
2013 – Closure: WSEX closes while owing over $1 million
By March of 2013, WSEX owed more than $1 million to players. The occasional small payout reports designed to keep valued customers activated completely stopped. On April 9, 2013, Sportsbook Review reported that WSEX was no longer updating its website with betting odds and their phone system was overloaded with an average wait time of 125 minutes. Within a week WSEX officially closed, and to add insult to injury, WSEX “sinisterly” apologized for their downfall. SBR receives inquiries from WSEX victims weekly. Players often wonder if the book’s ownership, which was vocal against rogue operations during more than a 10 year period, will eventually make a statement and reveal what lead to players ultimately being stiffed.
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WSEX Sportsbook down for the count?
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Scam sportsbook WSEX owes more than $1 million
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