The Stars Group Unveils Fox Sports Partnership
Canadian gaming and online gambling company The Stars Group has announced its plans to partner with the Fox Corporation's Fox Sports division. Together they will launch a national sports betting and media partnership in the United States.
The venture will be called Fox Bet, and two new products will be available under its name in the fall of 2019. In addition to a sportsbook that will also be known as Fox Bet, customers will be able to take advantage of a free-to-play portal that awards real money and prizes.
The duration of the commercial agreement is 25 years, during which time The Stars Group will act as lead provider of sports betting and online games to the Fox Corporation. The Group will also hold exclusive licences to use certain trademarks.
The Stars Group's Proven Formula
A similar arrangement exists between the betting operator and Sky Sports in the United Kingdom, with a media partnership strategy that involves integrating sports wagering with broadcasting and working to acquire and retain customers. Now the firm wants to replicate its success in the United States, and is very confident in its ability to do so.
Chief Executive Officer Rafi Ashkenazi commented that his company believed the newly inked deal positioned them to build their betting business in the USA. He added that this market was one of the Group's most exciting growth opportunities, and that their proven partnership strategy, as demonstrated with Sky Sports, should make them their North American foray equally fruitful.
Fox Execs Also Pleased With Deal
For their part, Fox Corporation has moved to acquire 14.3 million newly issued Stars Group common shares on the Toronto Stock Exchange. This represents about 5% of the Group's equity, and should further bolster the relationship with them. Transactional funding of $236 million has been secured, and the Canadian company has confirmed that the net proceeds will be used for “general corporate purposes”, along with prepaying outstanding indebtedness on first lien loans.
Eric Shanks, who serves as Fox Sports executive producer and chief executive officer, said that his network is already synonymous with the United States' best live sports events, and that this agreement would expand their services so that they could further immerse fans in sports culture. He emphasised the growth potential in the digital sports wagering market, and said it allowed for more diverse revenue streams, brand expansion, and direct connection with consumers