Things just got really tough for Fox Bet’s and FanDuel’s U.S. sports betting rivals.
Because those two industry-leading giants are reportedly going from bitter rivals to fast friends thanks to a shocking merger, announced on Tuesday in a news release, between two of the largest online betting and gaming operators in the world.
The historic merger between Flutter Entertainment, which purchased FanDuel earlier this year, and The Stars Group, which partnered with Fox Sports to create the recently released Fox Bet app, are now set to combine forces sometime during 2020 pending required regulatory approvals.
The result of that merger should give Fox Bet and FanDuel a combined edge over all their other competitors and could lead to those companies enjoying sustained success over the long haul on the American sports betting frontier.
The all-shares deal between FanDuel’s and Fox Bet’s parent companies is reportedly aimed at capitalizing on the burgeoning U.S. sports betting market that began in earnest back in May 2018 after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned a decades-long federal ban on sports betting.
At present, over one-fifth of the states in the U.S. have legalized sports betting in one form or another with up to 24 more states at least discussing such a move within their state legislatures.
Companies such as DraftKings, FanDuel and Fox Bet had all built a pretty solid case in terms of how much a foothold each had during these early stages of market share battles, and how that foothold could be turned into landing the premier position at the top of the heap of whatever the fully mature U.S. sports betting market turns out to be a decade or so from now.
But FanDuel combining forces with Fox Bet next year will essentially create a new juggernaut on the U.S. sports betting scene, one that could conceivably move very quickly into states that legalize sports betting over the next few years and one that would have a huge reach in terms of existing audience and built-in brand awareness.
After all, the group already has access to markets in 24 states and over 100 million Fox Sports viewers in homes across America. That’s not just a really good start in the market. It’s already a really big share of that market.
The most noteworthy synergy to watch for will be the growth of the Fox Bet mobile betting platform. Fox Sports launched that sportsbook app last month through a partnership with The Stars Group to become the first U.S. sports media company to dive headfirst into the world of sports gambling.
Fox Bet’s approach of combining mobile sportsbook services with related Fox Sports content and programming is unique stateside, one with the potential to grow engagement levels to new heights.
FanDuel is a well-known and recognizable daily fantasy sports company and ahas already become a hugely successful sportsbook operation in America.
The people at Fox certainly seem delighted about the move.
“Our Fox Bet partnership is off to a great start, and teaming up with Flutter and FanDuel will allow us to build on that strength and jointly capture the significant market potential ahead of us,” Lachlan Murdoch, Executive Chairman and CEO of Fox Corporation, said via press release. “We’re excited to be able to expand our partnership into FanDuel, which together with Fox Bet, will be a leader in sports wagering in the US.”
That last bit is key. The combined force of Fox Bet and FanDuel might truly become an insurmountable obstacle to all other companies hoping to carve out the biggest share of the U.S. sports betting pie.
Because this Fox Bet/FanDuel 2020 team-up is going to be a really big deal.