It’s information overload everywhere, and there’s not enough time to sleep, eat, and remain completely informed about what’s occurring on this crazy blue dot of ours (although two out of three isn’t terrible).
Here is the weekend edition of Sports Handle’s “Get a Grip” column, in which we review the week’s most important headlines regarding sports betting in the United States, spotlight some recent events, and round up important items.
This week’s top network stories
When you have the top executives of the world’s most successful gaming firms in the same room to talk about sports betting in front of thousands of people linked to the industry in Las Vegas, you’re going to have some intriguing conversations, both in public and in private. This was the case this week, as it is every year at the Global Gaming Expo, or G2E, which is hosted by the American Gaming Association.
During their time together on stage, the chief executive officers of FanDuel and DraftKings shared what has been referred to as a “kumbaya moment.” However, during their own panel discussion, the leaders of California’s most important gaming tribes voiced nothing but contempt for the state’s most important commercial operators, whom they believe insult them. The upcoming initiative for California Proposition 27 is just one example of this.
There was discussion about how the sports betting sector needs to evolve to establish relevance for new clients, with Uber’s own business evolution serving as a kind of role model for the discussion. Erika Nardini, the Chief Executive Officer of Barstool Sports, was asked for her opinion on how the company has contributed to the transformation of traditional ways to sports betting interaction on behalf of its owner, PENN Entertainment.
At the event, where panels focused on trends toward enticing more women to betting and to positions in the betting industry, she was not the only prominent female speaker. In fact, she was one of several prominent women who spoke at the event.
Our reporting team was all over the convention space to monitor the important discussions that were taking place in Las Vegas. In addition to this, we continued to follow and write about developments in other parts of the country, as evidenced by the stories that came from our various sites this past week.
The NBC Sports analyst Berry has joined the nVenue team
nVenue, a technology startup based in Dallas, made the announcement on Thursday that it will be expanding into NFL micro-betting, following a successful summer in which it powered the predictive analytics for Friday night MLB games that were shown on Apple TV+.
The introduction of nVenue’s micro-betting markets for NFL wagering takes place concurrently with the appointment of NBC Sports expert Matthew Berry to the advisory board of the company. Before the beginning of the NFL regular season, Berry made the transition from his lengthy role as an analyst for fantasy sports at ESPN to NBC.
Through the NextPlayLive API service, nVenue will distribute around 70,000 football micro-betting markets to sportsbook operators and data providers on a weekly basis. Berry stated that the technological knowledge offered by nVenue takes the speedy form of wagering to the “next level,” despite the fact that micro-betting should be considered as a tool for increasing fan involvement.
— Matt Rybaltowski
Keystar Corporation has purchased ZenSports.
This past week, it was revealed that Keystar Corp. had bought the majority of ZenSports, a peculiar and crypto-forward sports betting company that had a gaming license in Nevada and had plans to debut in Tennessee and Wyoming. The acquisition was reported this week.
The transaction will now comprise all of ZenSports’ assets, with the exception of the company’s two gambling locations in Nevada. These properties include the Book at Baldini’s in Sparks and the Big Wheel Casino, which is a truck-stop slots business in Lovelock. Mark Thomas, the Chief Executive Officer of ZenSports, informed Sports Handle in an email that the sale of the two properties to Keystar “will be happening later this year.”
Ultimate Gamer is an esports brand that focuses on both live and online competitions, and it was disclosed in the press release that announced the sale that Keystar had bought Ultimate Gamer.
— Mike Seely
Recent developments in the world of business
This week, the majority of the industry was in Las Vegas for the G2E conference, and numerous stakeholders took advantage of the gathering as a backdrop to make announcements regarding new hires or moves in the C-Suite. Take a look at the following examples:
Matt Wilson was appointed chief executive officer and president of Light & Wonder, in addition to receiving a seat on the company’s board of directors. Wilson, who had previously served as the company’s CEO of gaming and will now take over for Gary Cottle,… Gary Fritz was officially promoted to the position of president of MGM Resorts Interactive after he oversaw the corporation’s acquisition of LeoVegas.
He will be responsible for overseeing the growth of digital properties, which may include mergers and acquisitions. … In a recent announcement, Scientific Games named Mona Garland to the position of chief human resources officer of the company. … Joe Kaminkow, formerly the creative director of Zynga, has taken the position of chief innovation officer at Aristocrat. … Jim Bombassei has been appointed to the positions of executive vice president, chief financial officer, and secretary, beginning December 1 at SciPlay Corp. At the moment, he holds the position of SVP at Light & Wonder.
— Jill R. Dorson
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