Welcome to the latest edition of "Bet On It," where The Fly looks at news and activity in the sports betting and iGaming space.
FANDUEL TV: FanDuel, owned by Flutter Entertainment (PDYPY), announced its intent to launch FanDuel TV, which will include a broadly distributed linear cable television network, and its new OTT platform to be known as FanDuel+. Both FanDuel TV and FanDuel+ will go live in September of this year. As part of the launch, FanDuel TV will welcome Kay Adams, who previously served as a host of Good Morning Football on the NFL Network and will headline the network with a live daily morning show five days per week. As part of the launch, the company announced that FanDuel+ will be free to download for existing FanDuel customers with accounts on any of its sportsbook, casino, horse racing or daily fantasy platforms. As part of the launch of FanDuel TV, the company has reached a programming agreement with The Ringer providing FanDuel TV content. Details on specific content from The Ringer, which Bill Simmons founded in 2016, will be disclosed in the future. FanDuel TV intends to become the new home of international basketball in the U.S. As part of a licensing agreement with Sportradar (SRAD), FanDuel TV and FanDuel+ will air more than 3,000 hours of live sports including international basketball league action from the National Basketball League, Australia's professional league, the Chinese Basketball League, as well as the French and German pro leagues. FanDuel TV will be broadly distributed on linear television through its relationships with cable and satellite distributors including Comcast Xfinity, Spectrum, Verizon FIOS, DirectTV, DISH, Cox Communications, FuboTV, YouTubeTV, and Hulu. FanDuel+ will also be widely available on direct-to-consumer OTT platforms including Roku, Apple TV, and Amazon Fire.
DATA AND STREAMING PACT: Genius Sports (GENI) has clinched a new partnership with Bally's Interactive, a division of Bally's (BALY) that operates the omni-channel provider's sports betting, iGaming, free-to-play, and daily fantasy sports platforms. Under the terms of the agreement, Genius Sports will provide Bally's Interactive brands, including its online sportsbook Bally Bet, with its full suite of official data and live streaming solutions. Genius Trading Services, Genius Sports' sportsbook solution, will help Bally's Interactive to "maximize profits and operational performance across thousands of events every year," the company stated.
ANY TAKERS: Ahead of the August 31 deadline, nearly 12 sportsbook operators have confirmed their interest in a Massachusetts sports betting license as of Thursday, according to Matthew Waters of Legal Sports Report. The Massachusetts Gaming Commission, or MGC, has requested anyone interested in running one of the 15 Massachusetts online sportsbooks to alert the commission via email. Knowing just how many applicants there might be, especially for the seven competitive-bid licenses, will help the commission with a potential launch timeline, Executive Director Karen Wells told LSR. The WGC website lists the interested parties as follows:
Notable companies not on the list thus far include; Barstool Sportsbook (PENN), BetMGM (MGM), BetRivers (RSI), Caesars (CZR) and FanDuel. As for a start date for legal sports betting in the Bay State, it could be known as soon as the next meeting on September 8, officials said. It has been speculated that the start date could be in the new year.
POLITICS COMES INTO PLAY: A top official in Kansas Democratic Governor Laura Kelly’s office sent a letter Monday to her Republican opponent, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt, regarding whether he acknowledged if Schmidt’s own office had broken attorney-client privilege in disclosing issues with proposed sports betting regulations from the Kansas Lottery., of The Kansas City Star reported. Will Lawrence, the governor’s chief of staff, told Schmidt in the letter that the Kansas Lottery was likely not aware of the potential issues with the regulations ahead of the Kansas Attorney General’s Office sharing that information with the media. The letter comes after John Milburn, a spokesman for Schmidt, told the press last week that the Kansas Attorney General’s Office had found “significant legal issues” right after Kelly publicly announced sports betting would begin in Kansas on September 1. On Friday, Milburn released a letter from the Kansas Attorney General’s Office to the Kansas Lottery outlining the areas of concern, which included questions about definitions and whether some regulations were necessary.
Over on the east coast, Stacey Abrams supported a plan to legalize casino gambling and sports betting to expand the HOPE scholarship and finance a needs-based program as part of a revamped economic platform she hopes will boost her chances to unseat Republican Governor Brian Kemp, wrote Greg Bluestein of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The Democrat said that the new tax dollars generated by legalized gambling would be a “permanent source of revenue to underwrite broader access to education,” including extending the scholarship to students with a “C” average and above. “Studies project that the potential for billions exists in economic impact, funds that will not only finance our efforts to replenish and expand the HOPE scholarship but it will also provide new economic opportunities for Georgia that can grow jobs and make our economy stronger for everyone,” she said. An expansion of gambling requires a constitutional amendment that would need to be approved by two-thirds of the Legislature and a majority of Georgia voters in a referendum. “Hear me clearly, we don’t have to raise taxes,” Abrams said of her agenda. “All we have to do is raise our expectations of those who lead us.”
SPORTS BETTING ABROAD: DAZN Bet has launched in the United Kingdom, its first market ahead of a rollout in more markets in the near future. DAZN Bet is the result of a strategic partnership with DAZN, the sports entertainment platform. DAZN Bet said it seeks to refresh the casual betting market by creating a more recreational, sociable, and relevant experience for today’s sports fan. The company said, "Sports fans in the United Kingdom can head over to DAZN Bet right now... Fans elsewhere in the world can use the website to stay tuned for more details on when the soft launch will come to their country. DAZN is fast becoming the daily destination for sports fans. Its ambition is to reinvigorate sports broadcasting by delivering the widest catalogue of sports contents to fans globally while creating a truly 360-degree interactive sports entertainment experience for customers." Mark Kemp, CEO, DAZN Bet, added: “Today’s launch is only stage one. We are on a mission to create a richer product that is integrated into DAZN’s sports streaming service, where possible, providing sports fans with something much more immersive and interactive than what is currently available. It is a journey, and we begin it today.”
ANALYST COMMENTARY: Maxim analyst Jack Vander Aarde lowered the firm's price target on Elys Game Technology (ELYS) to $2 from $5 but reiterated a Buy rating on the shares. The company's Q2 results missed expectations with total turnover of $188M falling 14% and total revenue down 11% y/y amid stronger U.S. Dollar, the analyst told investors in a research note. Vander Aarde added however that his updated 2022 and 2023 forecasts may prove conservative given the multiple early stage growth catalysts, including further expansion of B2B operations in the U.S., Canada, and Europe, as well as the recently announced partnership with global industry giant, Lottomatica S.p.A. H.C. Wainwright analyst Scott Buck lowered the firm's price target on Elys to $3 from $5 and maintained a Buy rating on the shares post the Q2 revenue miss. The analyst says "optimism remains ahead" of the company's second half of 2022.
PUBLICLY TRADED COMPANIES IN THE SPACE INCLUDE: Accel Entertainment (ACEL), Bally's (BALY), Boyd Gaming (BYD), Caesars (CZR), Churchill Downs (CHDN), DraftKings (DKNG), Flutter Entertainment (PDYPY), Gan Limited (GAN), Genius Sports (GENI), Las Vegas Sands (LVS), MGM Resorts (MGM), Penn National (PENN), Rush Street Interactive (RSI) and Wynn Resorts (WYNN).