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FOX Bet faces impending shutdown in ultra-competitive US sports wagering industry

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In a dramatic turn of events, FOX Bet, once a promising player in the US sports betting landscape, is now on the brink of closure, according to sources with knowledge of the matter. News Corp (NASDAQ: NWSA) and Flutter Entertainment (OTC: PDYPY) are reportedly gearing up to announce the final verdict on Monday, July 31, with the curtains officially falling on FOX Bet the following day.

The do-or-die situation gets imminent for FOX Sports

This do-or-die decision has been looming over the media giant, with August 1 being the critical date that could seal FOX Bet’s fate. One option was for News Corp to inject more funds into the struggling sports wagering venture, attempting to keep it afloat in the fiercely competitive market. However, the odds seem stacked against FOX Bet, as it currently holds a meager market share of less than 1% in just four US states.

FOX Bet faces impending shutdown in ultra-competitive US sports wagering industry

Despite its potential demise, News Corp remains a prominent player in the sports betting scene, with ambitious plans in both its native Australia and the United States. While FOX Bet’s future hangs in the balance, Fox still retains the right to acquire up to 18.6% of Flutter-controlled FanDuel—undoubtedly the largest online sportsbook operator in the US. With FanDuel’s estimated valuation reaching $20 billion, News Corp has a valuable asset within reach.

Related: FOX Bet officially says goodbye

FOX Sports’ outlook–is it that bad?

Should FOX Bet bow out of the race, Fox will still maintain the branding rights and popular Super 6 predictive games. Moreover, discussions have been underway with other sports wagering companies to explore potential marketing agreements with Fox’s array of networks. Although the exact role of FOX Bet in such arrangements remains uncertain, the brand’s legacy could continue to influence the industry.

Flutter Entertainment holds the reins of FOX Bet, following its acquisition of the Stars Group (TSG) in a massive $12.2 billion deal in 2020, with Fox as a major investor. However, since then, the FOX Bet brand has struggled to find its footing, while Flutter has prioritized its focus on the flourishing FanDuel platform.

Leaving…for the best future-wise?

For Flutter, FOX Bet’s closure could bring some non-monetary advantages. Ridding itself of an unprofitable and troublesome unit could streamline its operations, while retaining valuable assets such as the customer database and marketing agreements associated with FOX Bet.

Additionally, Flutter is gearing up to list its shares in the US, expected to take place before year-end. Parting ways with FOX Bet could refine the investment proposition, making Flutter’s stock more appealing to a broader spectrum of investors in the US.

As the clock ticks towards the momentous announcement, the sports betting world is holding its breath, eager to witness the outcome of this high-stakes gamble for FOX Bet. Whether it’s a triumphant turnaround or a closing chapter, the industry’s future awaits the final decision on FOX Bet’s fate. Stay tuned for the latest updates in this gripping sports betting saga!

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