Fanatics Secures PointsBet US Operations in Seven States

Fanatics Betting and Gaming, the sportsbook arm of the sports merchandise operator Fanatics, has completed the takeover of PointsBet US sports betting operations in seven states.

These states are Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia.

With this move, PointsBet will undergo a rebranding process in the acquired states, transitioning to “PointsBet, a Fanatics Experience.”

The rollout of the full Fanatics sports betting app in these new states, as available in Massachusetts and Ohio right now, will be coming in the next few months.

Fanatics acquired PointsBet US in June 2023 for $225 million. However, regulatory hurdles have kept it from transferring operations over until now.

“We are excited about what we are building at Fanatics Betting and Gaming, and this acquisition accelerates our plans,” said Matt King, CEO of Fanatics Betting and Gaming, in a company press release.

Road to Launch

Fanatics first announced it was moving into the sports betting market in 2022.

The acquisition of Australian operator PointsBet’s U.S. operations was the first step. Fanatics initially bid $150 million, which was at first accepted by the PointsBet board.

However, one of the two market leading sportsbooks, DraftKings, attempted to derail the plan with a $195 million bid of its own.

That led Fanatics to counter with its eventually successful $225 million offer.

Since securing the deal, Fanatics launched its own sportsbook for beta testing earlier this year in Ohio and Tennessee, and then Massachusetts and Maryland joined in May.

Earlier this month, all four states launched the fully operational Fanatics online betting app.

With PointsBet’s operations now secured in seven more states, the full Fanatics sportsbook could soon be available in 11 markets.

Earlier this year, Fanatics Betting boss King spoke in an interview about his company’s plans after the PointsBet acquisition.

He revealed the company was aiming to be operation in 14 states by the end of the year.

That goal is not far off. However, King continued to emphasize the company would take things slow with a long-term vision. It’s something he has often stressed over the past year’s beta-testing rollout.

“We have a ten-year plan that focuses on the customer and not market share,” King said in the latest press release.

“We are going to acquire customers efficiently, allowing us to return savings to customers by investing in the customer experience at Fanatics Sportsbook and PointsBet, a Fanatics Experience.”

Approvals Required

Further enhancing its platform, Fanatics also revealed it plans to incorporate Banach Technology’s risk management platform and trading models into the Fanatics Sportsbook app.

This integration aims to elevate its live in-game betting capabilities, a feature that has been growing in popularity among sportsbooks and U.S. bettors.

While the current acquisition covers eight states, Fanatics has broader aspirations.

Regulatory challenges persist, as transferring licenses from PointsBet to Fanatics requires state approvals. In states like Indiana and Illinois, the PointsBet platform will continue its operations until Fanatics obtains the necessary permissions.

The future of PointsBet’s top executives post-acquisition has also been a topic of interest.

It’s confirmed that Johnny Aitken will retain his role as the CEO of PointsBet USA.

Despite parting with its U.S. assets, PointsBet will maintain its operations in Canada, with plans to reach a financial break-even point by mid-2024.