Monday September 30,2013 : SPORTECH AND PICKLIVE IN FANTASY SPORTS J.V.
Joint venture will give entry to US market
The British online and land gambling operator Sportech plc has announced a joint venture with fantasy sports developer Picklive that will see the launch of an American-facing gaming product branded Picklive USA next year.
Picklive USA will target the rapidly growing U.S. fantasy sports market, worth an estimated $2 billion, through a combination of daily fantasy sports, social gaming and in-play entertainment, with nationwide distribution leveraged by Sportech's extensive reach in the U.S., where it currently processes 50 percent of all horseracing bets.
The new fantasy games will extend Sportech's product offering beyond horseracing to a substantial sports market, including U.S. professional-league football, baseball, basketball, hockey, and soccer.
Picklive will be accessible to Sportech's existing customer base in Connecticut as well as to its B2B customers through eBet, Sportech's U.S. online division, which operates over 20 horserace betting websites.
The new fantasy games will be launched next year in Connecticut following the commercial launch of MyWinners.com, Connecticut's only legal online betting, which is expected before the end of 2013. Further distribution opportunities will be made available by utilising Sportech's customer base across the United States.
Research carried out by the Fantasy Sports Trade Association in 2013 estimated that 33.5 million adults play fantasy sports games in the US, in an industry worth over $2 billion, with daily fantasy sports taking a rapidly increasing share of the overall market.
Sportech sees the opportunity to bring the "social" experience into the fantasy sports space, and aims for Picklive USA to be the ultimate second-screen entertainment and social experience during live sport, a company statement revealed.
Ian Penrose, Sportech CEO said:
"This transaction further develops our increasing online presence in the rapidly growing U.S. market. With Sportech's strong heritage in sports gaming and strong relationship base, the daily fantasy sports market is a natural potential growth area for us, and I am excited by Picklive USA's potential to become a major player in this space."
David Galan, CEO of Picklive said:
"We are delighted to be partnering with Sportech given its unique position as a major operator in the highly regulated and rapidly changing U.S. gaming market. Picklive has already enjoyed great success in the UK and this opportunity allows us to bring product innovation and the ‘social' element into the daily fantasy sports space in the U.S. and become a primary second-screen entertainment destination and social experience to accompany live sport."