The end for FanDuel in the UK?

By Caroline Watson
In an e-mail sent to current players, FanDuel has announced it will not be offering its services for the forthcoming season, with a full refund being offered to its clients.

The operator has only had a short stint in the UK, launching back in August 2016 after striking a partnership deal with sports data provider Opta.

Prior to the launch the company said it would maintain most of its focus on the English Premier League. However, due to this abrupt departure from the market, the operator will only have been involved in one season, ducking out just before 2017's fixtures kick off.

The company has offices in both Edinburgh and Glasgow but moved its headquarters to New York several years ago. It is now one of the two major daily fantasy sports giants along with DraftKings, retaining over six million registered users across the US and Canada.

A company spokesperson from FanDuel shared this statement with Gambling Insider: "We will not be operating our UK product this upcoming EPL season to focus on our product in the US. As we approach the NFL season, we are allocating all of our resources towards ramping up a US product that consumers love and building out complementary fantasy sports products. There are over 53 million people playing fantasy sports in the United States and we are investing all of our resources on that market."

Colossus Bets CEO Bernard Marantelli commented: "It would seem FanDuel are exiting the UK, and won’t offer betting on ‘soccer’ pools or any pools to UK clients going forward. They have started to refund everyone’s client balances. Is this the death knell for DFS betting in Europe?

"People have long argued it could not compete against ‘real’ or traditional betting, and only survived in the USA due to an absence of competition. If a USA heavyweight can’t make it in the UK, where does that leave the start-ups in this space? More importantly where does it leave them in the US when/if they legalise ‘real’ sports betting?"

The operator has yet to disclose whether or not it will be making a return, however in the email circulated to players it stated: “We hope to be back in the future, bringing you more of the games you love.”

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