Fanatics, the sports platform company with a private valuation of $31 billion, has agreed to acquire the U.S. operations of PointsBet for $150 million in cash. This marks Fanatics’ first major move into U.S. sports betting. The deal is expected to give Fanatics access to at least 15 states. Fanatics plans to fund some of the remaining cash flow burn from PointsBet, which has had to spend heavily on marketing to compete with larger rivals DraftKings and FanDuel.
PointsBet Shareholder Vote Expected in Late June
PointsBet, whose shares are traded in Australia, is expected to hold a shareholder vote on the deal in late June. Only PointsBet’s U.S. assets are part of the deal. If the deal falls apart, PointsBet said it would need to raise additional capital at a “significant discount to recent market prices” in the near term. NBCUniversal will get proceeds from its previous deal with PointsBet and will no longer have an equity stake. NBC acquired a 4.9% equity stake in PointsBet in 2020.
Fanatics has been in talks with different sports betting companies over the past year as it has plotted its path forward in mobile gambling. Fanatics owns commerce assets, a sports trading card business, and is building out a sports betting division. The company acquired legendary trading card company Topps for $500 million last year. The company has forecast 2023 revenue of $8 billion.
“This is a 10-year journey,” said Matt King, the CEO of Fanatics Betting, at the SBC Conference earlier this month. “We’re going to move very methodically through that 10-year journey. And by doing that and taking that approach, it allows you to be a bit more considered in your decisions. You can kind of move slower, slightly slower today, in order to move fast later.”
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