NBA snubs US DFS providers to sign deal with PlayOn
By Robert Simmons
National Basketball Association (NBA) has agreed a deal with UK based DFS service PlayOn, snubbing US based providers FanDuel and DraftKings.
Under the terms of the agreement PlayOn will become the official daily fantasy provider of the NBA in its European, Latin American and Asian markets.
This deal comes despite the NBA having an existing partnership and equity stake in FanDuel, a leading name in the US DFS market.
Salvatore LaRocca, NBA President of Global Partnerships today said: “Our partnership with PlayON provides us an opportunity to deepen our engagement with our international audience, and bring these fans closer to the game.”
It is hoped that the deal will allow the NBA to build on its growing global popularity and enable it to expand DFS into markets with clearer regulatory structures than the US, where a state specific approach to regulation is employed.
Killian Jones, founder and CEO of PlayOn said today, “Our approach to regulation is resonating well with sporting organisations. We are only going to operate where the regulatory framework is well established and very clear,” he said. “There is no question or ambiguity around regulation or licensing – which puts people at ease.”
PlayOn currently offers DFS contests in more than 100 countries but only accepts real money bets from the UK, Ireland and Australia, where it is licensed to do so.
Jones said: “The NBA’s global reach and daily fixture schedule make it an ideal fit for daily fantasy. We look forward to working closely with the NBA to deliver innovative sports entertainment experiences to basketball fans around the world.”
Beginning with the 2017 NBA playoffs, DFS contests will be available to fans in markets such as Germany, UK, Italy, France and Spain in Europe; Brazil, Mexico and Argentina; and Australia, Japan and the Philippines in Asia.
The preferences and look of each contest will be specifically tailored to the language and cultural needs of that region.