Business Irish

Thursday 22 February 2018

Paddy Power Betfair increases presence in the US with DRAFT acquisition

Paddy Power Betfair’s CEO Breon Corcoran
Paddy Power Betfair’s CEO Breon Corcoran
Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

Paddy Power Betfair has announced that it has bought the US-based, daily fantasy sports operator, DRAFT.

The initial cash cost of the investment is $19m (€17m). A further contingent consideration of up to $29m (€27m) will be payable over the next four years depending on the financial performance of the business.

"We are excited to be bringing DRAFT into the Group and to further increase our presence in the United States. We believe the business, with the support of our marketing and technology expertise, can take share in the fast-growing daily fantasy sports market," Breon Corcoran, chief executive, of Paddy Power Betfair said.

The group has said that, in addition to the upfront payment, it expects to invest approximately $20m in the business in 2017, mostly for marketing purposes.

Read more: Paddy Power Betfair doubles operating profit in the first three months of 2017

According to the group, the acquisition provides it with exposure to a fast-growing market that is currently worth an estimated $300m and has grown at a rate of 90pc between 2014 and 2016.

The move adds to its US presence where it already has TVG, a horse racing channel, and its online casino business in New Jersey.

In April this year the company announced that its revenue at its online New Jersey casino was up 68pc in the first three months of 2017.

Commenting on the results in April, Corcoran said that a key strategic focus for 2017 would be the integration of its technology platforms. The acquisition of DRAFT, a mobile-led business, will feed into this.

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