Two major casino companies announced agreements on Monday with daily fantasy sports providers as they aim to extend their reach and incorporate into their gambling operations various ways of fan interaction with professional sports.
Bally’s continued its acquisition juggernaut in the first deal, announced Monday morning, by purchasing the daily fantasy sports company Monkey Knife Fight in an all-stock transaction that further extends the push of the fast-growing company to add casinos, online sports betting, and media companies.
Later in the day, Caesars Entertainment announced that it will buy the entire company over time in a strategic investment in SuperDraft, a daily fantasy sporting company founded in September 2019.
Daily fancy sports involve players assembling professional athletes’ virtual rosters and then competing with others based on the real-life performance of such athletes. It’s just played for fun and money.
The synergy between sports fantasy and sports has grown; DraftKings and FanDuel, the leading sports betting bookmakers in the United States, have become two of the dominants in original fantasy providers.
Providence, Rhode Island- Bally’s, along with DraftKings and FanDuel, is the third U.S. sports betting company to have a daily fantasy component.
In recent months, Bally has been on a tear, adding gambling and media properties, aiming at being a core national player.
George Papanier, the company’s president and CEO said that “With this acquisition, we are pleased to enter into the high-growth (daily fantasy sports) market. Monkey Knife Fight is a unique asset that we look forward to incorporating into Bally’s constantly growing omnichannel portfolio of land-based casinos and iGaming platforms.”
Bally’s recent moves include the purchase of Bally’s casino in Atlantic City, a media partnership with Sinclair Broadcast Group, and its pending acquisition of Bet.Works.
With Sinclair’s portfolio of 21 regional sport networks, the company is aiming to incorporate Monkey Knife Fight’s geographic presence in 37 countries, Washington, D.C., and Canada.
Monkey Knife fight has about 180,000 registered users, of which 80,000 have made cash deposits to play.
Papanier said that Monkey Knife Fight will help Bally’s plans to expand a potential customer database in states that have not yet adopted sports betting but which are considered lucrative potential markets, including California, Florida and Texas, as well as in Canada.
The deal is expected to close in the first quarter of 2021.
Caesars did not divulge the amount of its investment in SuperDraft, which operates in more than 35 states.
Steve Wang, CEO, and founder of SuperDraft said that “We’re super excited to be part of Caesars’ powerful gaming ecosystem.
Daily fantasy players deserve a breath of fresh air, and we’re here to transform the industry. SuperDraft is now well-positioned to accelerate its growth with financial staying power while broadening its consumer appeal with bigger contests and better rewards to players of all interest levels.”