By Samuel Indyk
Investing.com – Shares in Flutter Entertainment (LON:) were trading higher on Friday after the company’s US-based unit FanDuel signed a betting deal with the NFL.
On Thursday, the NFL announced a multi-year deal with Caesars Entertainment (NASDAQ:), DraftKings (NASDAQ:) and FanDuel that will see the three companies become Official Sports Betting Partners of the NFL.
As part of the agreements, the companies will have exclusive ability to leverage NFL marks within the sports betting category and activate around retail and online sports betting.
Financial details of the agreement were undisclosed but sources at ESPN expect it will be worth just shy of $1bln combined.
As part of the deal, the companies will be able to integrate relevant sports betting content directly into NFL Media properties, including NFL.com and the NFL App.
“On Super Bowl Sunday we got a glimpse at how powerful the combination of the NFL’s excitement and our platform can be in delivering an enhanced fan experience,” said FanDuel CEO Matt King. “We are delighted to make that combination official by pairing America’s market share leading sportsbook with America’s favourite sports league.”
Until 2018, sports betting was banned in the US but that all changed after New Jersey’s Supreme Court ruling in May of that year. Now, it is up to individual states whether they allow gambling.
This year, up to 19 states are expected to hold votes on whether to legalise gambling with 22 states already allowing sports betting within their boundaries.
The market is highly lucrative and UK gambling companies have looked to capitalise on the relaxed regulations.
Flutter Entertainment announced in December it had completed a $4.2bln deal to increase its stake in FanDuel to 95%.
However, last week, Murdoch-owned Fox filed an in a dispute over the value of its own stake in FanDuel. Fox has the option to buy an 18.6% stake in July and argues that it should be allowed to pay the same as Flutter Entertainment did in December.
Flutter is pushing for a higher price, saying that the December valuation would “represent a windfall to Fox compared to the fair market valuation as of July 2021”.
At 14:30BST, Flutter Entertainment shares were trading higher by 2.0% at £156.14.
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