Saturday 26 May 2018

Paddy Power in discussions to combine US business with FanDuel

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Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

Gambling group Paddy Power Betfair has confirm that it is in discussions to combine its US business with fantasy sports company FanDuel.

Any potential deal would create a business to target the prospective US sports betting market.

"Discussions are ongoing and there is no certainty as to whether agreement will be reached, or as to the terms or timing of any transaction," the group said in a statement.

No further details, including any financial details, were given and the group said that it would issue a further announcement "as appropriate."

The move comes just days after the US relaxed its gambling laws, providing an opening for the likes of William Hill and Paddy.

The US Supreme Court on Monday struck down a federal law which bans gambling on individual sporting events. States will now be able to choose individually whether to legalise sports betting.

FanDuel, founded in Edinburgh, is backed by the likes of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, Google Capital and NBC Sports Ventures.

It is a major player in the US fantasy sports market, where players pick teams and compete against others for cash prizes.

Earlier this month Paddy Power Betfair reported a 12pc slump in its first quarter profits.

It blamed a "sustained period of bookmaker-friendly sports results from November to February and a high level of racing fixture cancellations" as profits fell to €80m.

(Additional reporting from PA)

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