Private Equity Firm Wants to Merge Yahoo With Existing Sportsbook Operator, Report Says
Private equity firm Apollo might be looking to get into the sports betting game.
The firm, which acquired Yahoo for $5 billion last year, is in discussions to take Yahoo and merge it with a sports betting property, with the new company keeping the Yahoo name, CNBC reported on Wednesday.
Yahoo established itself, along with ESPN, as the early fantasy sports platform leader, though in recent years lost market share to FanDuel and DraftKings with the rise of daily fantasy before launching its own DFS platform that has lagged behind.
Yahoo entered a partnership with BetMGM in October of 2019. It’s mostly a media deal, with Yahoo running promos on its site for MGM, but users can use their Yahoo login at BetMGM.
In the mix for Apollo to merge with Yahoo, according to CNBC, is Australian sportsbook PointsBet, which is connected to NBC.
PointsBet is also working on building up its brand through media, with Action Network sources confirming SportsBusinessJournal’s report last week that the company has talked to ESPN NFL reporter Adam Schefter.
Apollo isn’t alone in looking for sportsbooks to swoop up. Fanatics, which last June hired FanDuel’s CEO Matt King to run its business, likely needs to buy a book for market access. And there’s definitely blood in the water.
Public sportsbooks like Penn and DraftKings are getting crushed by a market concerned with high consumer acquisition costs. Over the last year, Penn and DraftKings stock are down 59 and 66 percent, respectively.
Sports Illustrated launch its own sportsbook last year, but is still only in Colorado. MaximBet, Barstool Sportsbook and theScoreBet are other operators who began as media companies, or least adjacent to it.