Endeavor is putting down a big bet on sports wagering: The entertainment and talent-agency company clinched a deal to acquire OpenBet, a sports-gambling company, for $1.2 billion.
Endeavor is buying OpenBet from Scientific Games. The deal price of $1.2 billion will be paid through a combination of $1 billion in cash and $200 million in Endeavor’s Class A common stock. The acquisition is expected to close in the second quarter of 2022, subject to regulatory approvals and other closing conditions.
The acquisition will complement Endeavor’s position within the sports betting ecosystem, currently anchored by IMG ARENA, which works with more than 470 leading sportsbook brands worldwide to deliver official live streaming video and data feeds for more than 45,000 sports events annually.
The combination of OpenBet and IMG ARENA will create a unique end-to-end solution, delivering official data and video streams, premium content, cutting-edge mobile products and best-in-class betting technology solutions to leagues, federations and sportsbooks worldwide.
“OpenBet marks a strategic addition to our sports betting portfolio as we look to round out our technology and product offering for sportsbook operators and sports brands worldwide,” remarked Ariel Emanuel, CEO, Endeavor. “The combination of OpenBet and our IMG ARENA business will enable us to expand our footprint across the entire sports betting value chain and further capitalize on the tremendous upside we see coming from this fast-growing global industry.”
“This transformational announcement combines OpenBet’s market-leading sports betting ecosystem with unparalleled access to sports rights, content and data across the Endeavor portfolio,” said Jordan Levin, Chief Executive of Scientific Games’ Digital business. “Together, we are uniquely positioned to define the future of sports betting entertainment. Putting our customers and their players at the heart of our product and technology innovation will remain the key to our ongoing success. The team at OpenBet is second to none and we’re laser focused on the rapid expansion of the global sports betting market. Ari’s leadership and vision for the entertainment industry is exceptional and this is supported by Scientific Games’ commitment to Endeavor through the stock component of this deal.”
OpenBet, with more than 1000 team members situated across the globe, focuses exclusively on licensed customers and regulated global gaming markets serving a customer base that includes many top-tier sportsbooks such as DraftKings, FanDuel, WynnBet, SkyBet, Ladbrokes and William Hill. OpenBet specializes in betting engine technology, having processed approximately three billion bets in 2020, as well as trading, pricing and risk management tools; player account and wallet solutions; innovative front-end UX and UI; and content offerings such as BetBuilder, DonBest pricing feeds and an industry-first sports content aggregation platform.
IMG Arena works with leading sportsbook brands, leagues and federations worldwide, providing always-on services including live streaming and on-demand virtual sports products that inspire engagement by placing fans at the heart of the action. IMG ARENA’s rights holder clients include the PGA TOUR, Ryder Cup, UFC, ATP, USTA, Wimbledon, MLS and The Football Association.
The Raine Group acted as exclusive financial adviser to Endeavor on the transaction, and Latham & Watkins LLP acted as legal adviser.
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