ESPN may open up its own sportsbook in the near future
ESPN has been beefing up its gambling coverage over the past year and inked separate multiyear deals with DraftKings.
Headquartered in Connecticut, which just legalized sports betting and could have wagering on sports set up in time for the fall NFL season, ESPN could possibly even open its own branded sportsbook near its base of operations in Bristol.
While ESPN has been cutting corners and trimming talent in many areas, the company has been beefing up its gambling coverage over the past year and inked separate multiyear deals with DraftKings and Caesars Entertainment in the fall.
“With Caesars utilizing odds from William Hill’s sports betting data, we are able to deliver content in new and innovative ways,” said Mike Morrison, ESPN’s vice president of business development and innovation.
According to ESPN’s Mike Morrison, “Our multi-dimensional relationship is a testament to the growth and opportunity in the sports betting space.”
There’s no guarantee ESPN will follow through on the idea of opening its own branded book as a sportsbook bearing the brand would certainly test the family friendly focus of its parent company Walt Disney, but a Worldwide Leader wagering site might prove too lucrative to pass up.
On the other hand, ESPN may be able to secure many of the same financial benefits via strategic partnerships with organizations that are already associated with sports betting.
“Not hurrying would seem to be the right call and in the future you can enter into larger deals where you don’t have to take as much risk to get the benefit of ownership without the headache of operations and assumptions about future market segment size,” said media consultant Patrick Crakes.
Editing by Rachel Hu