Penn Entertainment See ESPN Bet as Natural Progression

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Senior leadership at Penn Entertainment, the sports betting and casino provider, has expressed the belief that the launch of ESPN Bet on the 14th of November is a natural progression for the ESPN brand.

ESPN is one of the leading sports media companies in the industry. The company will be able to add another revenue stream to its business with the launch of a betting platform, which is now possible in North America with the advent of legalized sports betting in 2018.

ESPN has reached a licensing agreement with Penn Entertainment to launch ESPN Bet, the sports betting platform, in a deal that is reported to be worth in the region of a billion dollars. The new platform is due to be launched on the 14th of November and will be in direct competition with the market leaders in the sports betting market, DraftKings and FanDuel.

Integrating Sports Wagers into ESPN's Digital Ecosystem

The CEO of Penn, Jay Snowden, indicated that ESPN was a major hub and media platform for sports bettors to watch sports and look for pre-match data and betting odds. It makes sense for sports bettors to now be able to place bets seamlessly as part of the integrated ESPN digital platform and is a strategy that seems almost inevitable.

It was crystal clear to me in that conversation that the ESPN sports fan who goes to ESPN products platforms every day to check on scores and storylines and box scores looks at the lines of these games. But when they’re ready to place a bet, they have to leave ESPN’s ecosystem and go somewhere else to place their bet. This isn’t something that ESPN wants to do. This is something ESPN has to do because sports fans are demanding it.

Jay SnowdenCEO of Penn Entertainment

Opportunity for Penn to Reach Sports Fans

Penn Entertainment operates retail gaming locations and has an online presence in more than 20 states in the US. They believe this deal is a good fit for the sports betting provider because the ESPN Bet brand gives it access to a large customer base of sports fans and potential new bettors.

One of the things we’ve talked about a lot is we’re seeking to reach sports fans, not just sports bettors. This is not a business that’s targeting sports bettors, it’s targeting sports fans, and with the ESPN brand leading into our ecosystem and designing a special look and feel, this is going to be incredibly compelling to the marketplace. What’s really different for us is this deep integration behind the number one sports media brand in the world, those sports fans who like to bet and want to bet and the trust factor, and to be able to do that seamlessly is something that we take very seriously.

Jay SnowdenCEO of Penn Entertainment

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