Monday 5. September, 2016

Seven West Media Negotiating with Crownbet and Fox Sports Over Draftstars

Seven West Media is in the midst of advanced negotiations with Australian betting operator Crownbet and News Corp Australia’s Fox Sports to partner with them in their fantasy sports joint venture, Draftstars.

Draftstars was launched in March by Crownbet and Fox Sports just before the start of the Australian Football League season. The Australian reported that a deal could be announced by the end of the week with a deal before the AFL final series a possibility.

Participants in Draftstars pay a fee in order to put together their own team of players for a given match or round, thereby creating their own fantasy team. Winners are awarded a payout from the prize pool, while the company retains a rake which is their fee. Crownbet, with their gambling license and industry experience, is also the official betting partner for the AFL. Fox Sports provides the marketing and cross promotion through its AFL and NRL broadcast coverage.

Fox Sports holds the subscription television rights to the AFL and NRL while Seven West Media holds the free-to-air broadcast rights for AFL. Seven is looking to increase its exposure in the gambling industry as this is free-to-air TV’s fastest expanding category of advertising. Through this partnership, Seven would be able to market Draftstars to an extremely large free-to-air audience during the AFL finals.

This is not the first deal that Seven has pursued in order to fulfil its aim of increasing exposure in the industry. Last year, Seven launched a free-to-air channel joint venture, Racing.com, together with Racing Victoria. Seven Group Holdings, the parent company of Seven West Media, is also rumoured to be planning to bid for the West Australian TAB gambling company if it is privatised in March after the state election.

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