Fantasy Sports and Sports Betting to Surge as Major Leagues Return to Play
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New York, NY – January 28, 2021 – When it comes to online gaming, a shift in attitude towards betting is underway, leading to projections of the US sports betting market hitting US$3 billion in 2021. The advent of legal online sports betting is rippling across several markets, with five more states looking to legalize this year. As new seasons are underway in both the NBA and NHL, it appears that the pains of last season’s adjustments are behind the pro sports leagues, and ratings are on the rise. With the rising interest in pro sports, the betting markets are seeing a surge, which is aiding several online gaming tech companies, including Bragg Gaming Group (TSXV: BRAG) (OTCQX: BRGGF), DraftKings Inc. (NASDAQ: DKNG), Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ: PENN), 888 Holdings (OTCPK: EIHDF), and Boyd Gaming (NYSE: BYD).
It’s not just the United States that’s seeing a sports resurgence. Via its market-leading subsidiary ORYX Hub platform, Bragg Gaming Group (TSXV:BRAG) (OTCQX:BRGGF) announced the launch of RGS services for European sports betting and casino operator Betway.
“We’re delighted to see our partnership with Betway go live and our titles are going to offer a new dimension of content to their players,” said Matevz Mazij, Managing Director of ORYX Gaming. “Our RGS content has already been proven strong in Germany and beyond, and this partnership will further strengthen the reach and reputation for both our companies.”
Prior to the Betway announcement, Bragg Gaming also struck a deal to enter the Netherlands, through Dutch land-based operators JVH Gaming & Entertainment Group. The agreement includes an integration with leading global sports betting provider Kambi Group.
“The Dutch online gambling market becoming regulated has been some time coming and we are excited about the opportunities now lying ahead,” said Eric Olders, CEO and Chairman at JVH. “We’re confident that with ORYX’s experience and the quality of their products, we will be able to offer our customers the best level of service and an unrivalled player experience. They have a great team and we look forward to partnering with them as one big team.”
After an exceptional 2020 full of client launches, the Netherlands and Germany are the latest regulated market entries for ORYX. ORYX’s content is certified or approved in 18 other regulated markets.
The last 12 months were especially positive for Bragg Gaming Group, which included exceptional revenue growth of 72% in Q3 2020. This momentum gave Bragg the push needed to graduate to the main board, the Toronto Stock Exchange, where it started trading on January 27, 2021.
“Bragg is well on its way to becoming a global leader in the online gaming space,” said Paul Godfrey, Board Member at Bragg Gaming. “The listing on the TSX will generate increased awareness among institutional and global investors and will put the Company squarely in the sights of major industry analysts. As the global online gaming industry continues to expand at an exponential rate, investors are looking for companies with the technologies and expertise to lead the way, and Bragg is a prime example.”
Bragg wasn’t the only group to enjoy a prosperous 2020, and play off of the momentum.
When it comes to sports betting, DraftKings Inc. (NASDAQ:DKNG) stands out as a pure-play sports betting company that has achieved a household name status.
Morgan Stanley is projecting that DraftKings Inc. could beat revenue estimates by 25% over the next 4 years.
“While stay-at-home tailwinds likely helped, the strength in iGaming has extended well beyond the early casino closures, suggesting acquired customers will continue playing and sports betting revenues beat our 4Q expectations despite a weaker sports calendar,” wrote Allen wrote in a note shared by Benzinga.
Allen sees launches and approvals in Arizona, Connecticut, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, New York, and Ontario as catalysts for this.
After the death of former Chairman Sheldon Adelson (a long-time opponent of online gaming), Las Vegas Sands now appears to be considering the takeover of 888 Holdings (OTC:EIHDF). It’s clear that with Adelson no longer at the helm, his former deputy Rod Goldstein is taking the lead on potential new expansion into online sports betting, and the potential 888 deal is an indication of this shift.
Wholly-owned subsidiary 888 Sport has been seen as a perfect sports betting addition to the parent company’s network of online poker and online casino games. Reviews of its user friendliness and responsiveness have been overwhelmingly positive, including living up to the claim of being one of the best mobile betting apps in the business. By adding 888 to its roster, Las Vegas Sands could potentially make one of the biggest splashes in the industry.
Getting out ahead into the online sports betting market, Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ:PENN) turned heads when it partnered with Barstool Sports to launch sportsbook offerings for new markets.
Most recently, the duo launched their sportsbook mobile app and iCasino products in the state of Michigan, after the Michigan Gaming Control Board approved the applications.
Another recently launched sportsbook platform is B Connected Sports from Boyd Gaming (NYSE:BYD). The mobile app allows the ability to bet on all professional and collegiate sports, among other features. However, at this time, the app is only available for users in Nevada.
Though the rollout of B Connected is still in a relatively early stage, Boyd Gaming has retained a 5% stake in the popular FanDuel brand, which Flutter Entertainment just paid $4.2 billion to increase their majority stake in.
As fantasy sports and sports betting gains in popularity among the big players like those mentioned above, companies like Bragg Gaming Group stand in the spotlight as an already established and growing player in the industry.
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