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Deal may be less than $1bn

Paddy Power Betfair in talks to acquire games firm FanDuel

Nigel and Lesley Eccles

Nigel and Lesley Eccles were recently in Edinburgh (photo by Terry Murden)


 

Sports fantasy company FanDuel is close to being acquired by Paddy Power Betfair.

The company, founded in Edinburgh a decade ago, is now headquartered in New York and under new ownership.

Paddy Power Betfair this morning confirmed that it has made an approach. It said: “Paddy Power Betfair notes the media speculation, and confirms it is in discussions, regarding a potential combination of the group’s US business and FanDuel to create a combined business to target the prospective US sports betting market.  

“Discussions are ongoing and there is no certainty as to whether agreement will be reached, or as to the terms or timing of any transaction. A further announcement will be made as appropriate.”

US online publication Legal Sports Report said a price has not been revealed but is likely to be below the $1 billion valuation once placed on FanDuel.

A deal would be the latest move in the consolidation of the gaming and betting market.

Paddy Power Betfair acquired fantasy sports platform Draft last year and has invested tens of millions in marketing costs in preparation for entry into a potential regulated sports betting market in the US.

It already has an online casino and also owns TVG, an online horse betting site.

FanDuel’s five co-founders, including CEO Nigel Eccles and his wife Lesley, have left the company in the past couple of years and moved on to new ventures.

The company, which fought a long-running legal battle in the US over its right to operate, still has a significant presence in Edinburgh and Glasgow.

Cryptocurrency P2P platform targets sports betting market

The world’s first crypto currency peer-to-peer (P2P) sports betting platform has been launched by a team of industry specialists, aimed at disrupting a global online sports betting market now valued at over $50 billion. 

Mungoparc, headquartered in Edinburgh, has developed the first ever Blockchain-powered, P2P betting platform where users can now bet on football games in the Premiership, SPL, La Liga, Champions League and Europa Cup among others with a range of cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin and Ethereum.   

Founder director Paul Roach said: “We are positioned for a new, younger type of sports better and one who wants a gaming experience to be part of the offering.

Paul Roach and Nick Jones
Paul Roach and Nick Jones

“We’re literally betting big on Blockchain and all the metrics point towards an upwards trajectory in both crypto currency use and sports betting.  Rather than launching yet another coin, we accept all crypto coins and tokens.  We know there are a massive amount of people unsure of how to spend their crypto and we think Mungoparc is going to give them a great destination.”

Mungoparc is actively considering adding other sports like cricket, tennis and eSports, which alone is expected to reach over $1.6 billion by 2020, to the site. 

UK online consumer spend on sports betting broke through the £3 billion barrier in 2017, with online betting over double that of over the counter (OTC) and football now as valuable as horse racing.

Markets such as Australia, the US, Singapore and Ireland exceed the UK in overall value and present further growth opportunities, particularly with the regulatory environment opening up in many territories.   

Investors in the founding team and product build to date include Galvanise Capital managing partner, Nick Jones, and a £1m seed funding round is now in process. The investment will fund accelerated product development to maintain first mover advantage as well as marketing and UX.

 



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