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DraftKings Signs Partnership Deal With Turner Sports

James Murphy
by in Gaming Industry on
  • DraftKings has signed a multiyear deal with Turner Sports.
  • The deal makes DraftKings the ‘Official Daily Fantasy Sports Partner and Official Sports Betting Partner’ across ‘select Turner Sports properties’ .
  • DraftKings offers mobile and retail betting in Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

DraftKings signed another big partnership deal yesterday, this one with Turner Sports. The multiyear agreement will make DraftKings ‘the exclusive sportsbook and daily fantasy sports provider across select Turner Sports and Bleacher Report properties’. The deal specifically excludes NBA programming which should facilitate the pro hoops league from setting up their own betting partnerships. More specically, it won’t step on any toes since Turner Sports’ NBA games are subject to a separate deal signed with DraftKings rival FanDuel.

As part of the deal, DraftKings content including sports betting information and DFS content will appear across a variety of channels including the B/R app. Here’s a statement from DraftKings further detailing the content relationship with the Turner Sports properties:

Under the arrangement, DraftKings will provide sports betting information and daily fantasy content across Turner Sports telecasts and Bleacher Report digital channels including the B/R app. Planned integrations will include custom content segments, DraftKings’ betting odds and daily fantasy statistics, original content, personalized automated alerts and editorial across B/R channels including the B/R Betting vertical, the most engaged digital sports media brand in the sports betting industry (Based on Sprnklr Data August-September 2020).

That leads us to the ‘dueling quotes’ from executives of each company. First we’ll hear from Ezra Kucharz, Chief Business Officer, DraftKings, who sees the reach of the Turner Sports brands as being beneficial for his company:

“Regulated betting is quickly becoming a fixture of modern sports entertainment, and this collaboration with Turner Sports further scales the reach of our products and content to engage fans. Turner Sports platforms provide exceptional content as they continually captivate sports audiences. Their medium aligns with the DraftKings’ brand and we look forward to delivering a seamless experience for readers and viewers while also broadening our visibility.”

Will Funk, Executive Vice President, Sports Partnerships and Branded Content, Turner Sports, emphasizes that sports betting helps drive engagement and increases the size and scale of audience:

“While this emerging industry continues to evolve, sports betting helps to drive engagement, increased time spent viewing and audience scale. This alliance enhances Turner Sports’ content with betting information that our hyper-engaged, highly interactive viewers demand, while driving customer engagement and acquisition for DraftKings.”

CNBC offered an interesting analysis on what each company hopes to get out of the deal. Unlike many financial industry takes on this type of partnership there’s no serious overreaction here. The article also indicates that Turner Sports isn’t ‘activating’ around their college sports platforms at this time. This is due to the dictates of the NCAA which means that for now at least DraftKings won’t get access to the massive college basketball market. Turner’s Funk won’t commit to anything:

“If it becomes available, it’s something we’ll talk about. At this point, it’s not on the table.”

DraftKings has been one of the most active sports betting providers in securing deals of this type. They’ve recently signed similar partnerships with the New York Giants, Chicago Cubs and Philadelphia Eagles. Obviously, relationships of this sort are good for raising brand awareness but the jury is still out as far as the value they provide as a revenue driver.

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