FuboTV Adds NASCAR to Pending Sportsbook

Fubo Sportsbook, the pending mobile sportsbook from online streaming platform FuboTV, has signed a partnership agreement with NASCAR to become an “authorized gaming operator” for the stockcar governing body. Fubo Sportsbook and NASCAR will collaborate to provide racing fans with a unique wagering experience.

The launch of Fubo Sportsbook (in Q4 2021) is an industry-first integration of sports wagering and live TV streaming, and is subject to requisite regulatory approvals as the line between professional sports and betting becomes even fuzzier.

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The deal marks Fubo’s first partnership in auto racing and marks its third major marketing deal in the professional sports industry following pacts with the New York Jets (NFL) and Cleveland Cavaliers (NBA).

“We’re eager to partner with NASCAR, a league with a rich history and passionate followers,” Sam Rattner, chief operating officer of Fubo Gaming, said in a statement. “Fubo Sportsbook is continuing to expand its marketing footprint, propelling us toward our goal of reaching sports enthusiasts across the country.”

Fubo Sportsbook will be promoted by NASCAR through a multi-channel marketing campaign bolstered by at-track assets, in-app use of NASCAR-owned track, series and event marks and logos, in addition to the distribution of assets across NASCAR’s digital and social platforms and events.

“Fubo Sportsbook provides us with an opportunity to further expand NASCAR’s reach through a unique sports betting experience,” said Joseph Solosky, managing director of sports betting, NASCAR. “Whether it’s the casual viewer or die-hard race fan, Fubo Sportsbook’s innovative approach to sports wagering brings a more exciting experience for our audience as they’re able to interact with the sport in new ways.”

Streaming Video Betting Big on Legalized Sports Gambling

Live sports and gambling have a long co-dependent relationship, which is expanding beyond casinos to over-the-top video. The new field of dreams for incremental billions in revenue began in 2018 after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the federal anti-sports-gambling law. Wagering on pro and college sports became legal in September 2019 with both mobile and in-person betting permitted.

Online video platform FuboTV’s pending gaming unit just launched marketing partnerships with the NFL’s New York Jets and NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers — a first for an OTT platform.

“Everybody does the NFL draft. Everyone’s got a mock draft. Well, seemingly every content area has their betting expert. So, I think the key is gamification of it,” Aaron Nagler, co-founder of Cheesehead TV, told a Streaming Media panel this summer. “It’s just extending what your visit to Vegas might be to an online experience wrapped inside whatever specific content you’re creating.”

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Fox Sports became the first major media company in the U.S. to acquire a stake in sports gambling after paying $236 million for a 5% ownership of The Stars Group.

“Digital sports wagering represents a growing market opportunity that allows us to diversify our revenue streams, connect directly with consumers and expand the reach of the Fox Sports brand,” said Eric Shanks, CEO of Fox Sports.

Fox Bet Super 6 just added nearly 3 million players during the 2020 NFL season, bringing its user base to more than 4.3 million players. It claims to be the biggest free-to-play online game of its kind in the country. The platform is rolling out in states that have legalized wagering, including most recently Michigan on Jan. 26. Fox also owns a 18.5% stake in FanDuel, the daily fantasy and online sports book.

“A key differentiator for Fox Bet has been across promotional power of all of Fox’s assets (including ad-supported streaming site Tubi) to ignite the Fox Bet brand,” Fox Corp. CEO Lachlan Murdoch said on an investor call earlier this year. The executive said sports gambling factors into ongoing distribution of NFL games.

“The NFL is very aware of the importance of sports wagering,” Murdoch said.

FanDuel in 2019 inked a deal with FuboTV, making it the exclusive sports book, online casino, horse racing and DFS (distributed file system) partner of the TV streaming service. The agreement was FanDuel Group’s first partnership with an online TV service aimed at expanding FuboTV’s sports offering for consumers while integrating betting data on the platform.

“We are always looking for ways to add value for consumers and enhance their premium experience with FuboTV,” said Min Kim, VP of business development at Fubo. “Gaming and sports are natural complements.”

Adam Kaplan, VP of content business and operations at FanDuel, said the company’s data analytics will change how people watch live sports on TV and the Internet.

“We can enhance the live-viewing experience by allowing cord-cutting sports fans to view the content that matters to them the most from their TV, phone, tablet or computer,” Kaplan said.

But FanDuel’s relationship with FuboTV could change as the latter branches out into its own sports gambling. The 6-year-old service last year acquired Balto Sports, a backend developer of fantasy sports gaming software, and Vigtory, an interactive sports gaming company, for its Fubo Gambling unit launching in the fourth quarter.

“The valuations around sports betting operators are so huge, why not take a punt on being one?” Andy Clerkson, a partner at Red Knot Communications, a gambling PR firm, told LegalSportsReport.com. “You could be a super-affiliate worth hundreds of millions. Or you could try and be an operator worth billions.”

The Motley Fool’s Rick Munarriz contends FuboTV can open the “spigot of sports gambling” without raising eyebrows the way Google or Disney might with regulators.

“FuboTV can go places where others can’t,” Munarriz wrote.

Disney-owned ESPN has partnerships with Caesars Entertainment, offering sport-betting-related content on ESPN and ESPN+, the brand’s SVOD platform.

“The sports betting landscape has changed, and fans are coming to us for this kind of information more than ever before,” said Mike Morrison, VP of business development at ESPN. “We are poised to expand our coverage in a big way.”

WarnerMedia Entertainment inked a deal with Caesars Entertainment to build a branded Vegas studio for its online Bleacher Report (B/R) platform.

Disney, which has sought to downplay tacit support for gambling, is changing its tune. ESPN recently launched “The Daily Wager” and “ESPN Bet.” In September, CEO Bob Chapek said the company would get more aggressive with sports wagering, including licensing the ESPN brand name to a third-party sports book for the right price.

“Let’s just say our fans are really interested in sports betting,” Chapek said at the virtual Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference event. “Let’s say our partners in the leagues are interested in sports betting, so we’re interested in sports betting. Strategically, sports betting gives us the ability to appeal to a much younger sports fan who has a very strong affinity for those sports. So it’s definitely a place we want to be.”

Sports Streamer FuboTV Launches E-commerce Platform

Online sports streaming platform FuboTV Sept. 28 announced the launch of its first e-commerce venture: Fubo Shop, an online store selling branded merchandise marketing the service and its forthcoming Fubo Sportsbook gambling venture.

Fubo Shop offers a large assortment of clothing and accessories from sweatshirts, T-shirts, long-sleeved shirts and vests, to baseball caps and hats, all customized with logos from FuboTV and Fubo Sportsbook.

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“Since our public offering on the New York Stock Exchange one year ago, consumers and retail investors have inundated us with requests for more personal ways to connect with our brand,” co-founder/CEO David Gandler said in self-serving statement. “We’re grateful for their ongoing support, and hope they enjoy the variety of new clothing and accessories options to help them show their Fubo pride.”

After launching in 2015 as a $6.99 monthly channel largely streaming soccer matches, FuboTV currently offers 90 channels for $64.99 per month, which includes 250 hours on a cloud-based DVR. The company, like the NFL, is embracing sports wagering as a significant legal revenue source. Now sports gamblers can bet on games wearing FuboTV merchandise.

FuboTV Capturing Stake in Live Sports/Betting Streaming Market

The subscription streaming video market is embracing live sports and gambling, and upstart online TV service fuboTV is leading the way.

The New York-based platform reported 138% year-over-year growth in total paid subscribers to 681,721, including 91,291 net sub additions in the second quarter, ended June 30. The company expects upwards of 910,000 subs by the end of the year.

Total revenue increased 196% to $130.9 million from the previous-year period, and advertising revenue shot up 281% to $16.5 million. Engagement also reached all-time highs with fuboTV subs streaming 245 million hours of content during the quarter, a 148% increase year-over-year.

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The platform has begun beta testing predictive, free-to-play gaming ahead of an expected launch this fall. The Fubo Sportsbook with real-money wagering remains on track for a fourth-quarter launch as the company plans to further combine interactivity with streaming video.

Michael Pachter, media analyst with Wedbush Securities in Los Angeles, said he expects fuboTV to double its sub base within the next two years, topping 1.2 million.

“FuboTV’s ability to offer comprehensive entertainment and sports viewing is a real differentiator, and its focus on the sports viewer/bettor should serve to accelerate subscriber growth,” Pachter wrote in an Aug. 11 note.

The analyst contends fuboTV to satisfy regulatory gaming requirements in up to three states by year end, and add another three states in 2022 as state government and sports gambling further meld.

“As fuboTV becomes more expert in dealing with the regulators, we expect [the platform] to ultimately offer real money wagering in 40 states,” Pachter wrote.

“If the company is ultimately successful in attracting free users to its app and converting some of these to real money wagering, it could generate as much as $2,000 in annual handle per paying user.”

The “handle” is the total amount of money that is wagered on a sporting event.

“It is too early to determine whether fuboTV can attract one million free app users…but if so, it could generate $20 million of annual high margin revenue for each one million free users,” Pachter wrote.

OTT Video’s Growing Secret: Sports Gambling

Over-the-top video is developing a lucrative relationship with legalized sports gambling — thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court striking down a ban on sports gambling a year ago.

Fubo TV and FanDuel Group May 23 announced a partnership that will make FanDuel the exclusive sportsbook, online casino, horse racing and DFS (distributed file system) partner of the live TV streaming service. The companies have also signed a media buy, which makes FanDuel the exclusive advertiser on fuboTV in these categories.

The agreement is FanDuel Group’s first partnership with an online TV service and will expand fuboTV’s sports offering for consumers while integrating betting data on the fubo platform.

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In addition, horse racing networks TVG and TVG2 (and FanDuel affiliates), will also be available to fuboTV subscribers nationwide. TVG will be added to Fubo’s 90+ channels ($54.99/month after seven day free trial), and TVG2 will be available through the Sports Plus add-on package of nearly 25 channels ($8.99/month).

With these channels, fuboTV subs will have access to horse racing industry coverage, in addition to expanded programming on sports betting and fantasy news, including TVG’s sports betting focused pre-game show, “More Ways to Win.”

“We are always looking for ways to add value for consumers and enhance their premium experience with fuboTV,” Min Kim, VP of business development at Fubo, said in a statement. “Gaming and sports are natural complements.”

Indeed, Disney-owned ESPN earlier this month announced it was partnering with Caesars Entertainment to build a branded studio in Las Vegas. The studio will offer sport-betting-related content on ESPN and ESPN+, the newly-launched SVOD service.

“The sports betting landscape has changed, and fans are coming to us for this kind of information more than ever before,” said Mike Morrison, VP of business development at ESPN. “We are poised to expand our coverage in a big way.”

In February, WarnerMedia Entertainment inked a deal with Caesars Entertainment to build a branded Vegas studio for its Bleacher Report (B/R) platform.

Fox Sports on May 8 became the first major media company in the U.S. to acquire a stake in sports gambling after paying $236 million  for a 5% ownership of The Stars Group.

“Digital sports wagering represents a growing market opportunity that allows us to diversify our revenue streams, connect directly with consumers and expand the reach of the Fox Sports brand,” said Eric Shanks, CEO of Fox Sports.

Adam Kaplan, VP of content business & operations at FanDuel, said the company’s data analytics will change how people watch sports on TV.

“We can enhance the live-viewing experience by allowing cord-cutting sports fans to view the content that matters to them the most from their TV, phone, tablet or computer,” Kaplan said.

Regardless of its legality, Disney CEO Bob Iger, speaking on the recent fiscal call, was quick to deflect the family-based media giant’s tacit support for gambling.

“We’ve already done some [gambling-related] things that we would integrate it into our programming, but not to the extent that we would be facilitating gambling as an entity,” Iger said. “In other words, we’ll provide programming that will, I guess, be designed to enlighten people who are betting on sports. But that’s as far as we would go. We just don’t intend to go into the gambling business.”