888 Lands Rights to Sports Illustrated for Online Sports Betting

    • 888 Holdings Plc has reached an agreement with Sports Illustrated.
    • The internet gambling operator has obtained exclusive rights to the iconic sports brand.

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888 Holdings, an internet gambling operator, has reached an agreement to obtain exclusive rights to the Sports Illustrated brand for online sports and casino wagering, according to Bloomberg.

Owned by the Authentic Brands Group, SI’s agreement with 888 lasts for up to 20 years and includes the opportunity to be included in brick-and-mortar locations. 

As part of the deal, Authentic Brands will have a 4.9% stake in 888’s U.S. business with the opportunity to increase it to 19.9%. 

Gibraltar-based 888 expects to launch the SI Sportsbook in Colorado during the second half of this year.

The exclusive rights partnership is the latest collaboration between media and gambling companies seeking to take advantage of a growing $3.2 billion U.S. sports betting market.  

  • CBS Sports and William Hill agreed to a first-of-its-kind partnership in September that included wide-ranging digital content and tools for fantasy football. 
  • NBC and PointsBet inked a five-year, $500 million sports betting partnership in August that makes the Australian sportsbook the exclusive provider of odds and trends for NBC.
  • Penn National Gaming purchased a stake in Barstool Sports, valuing the company at $450 million. The casino operator received a 36% stake for $163 million. 

888 reported $272.5 million in revenue in Q1 2021, a 66% increase year-over-year. 

Now, the company has a new entry point into sports gambling — $195.2 million of Q1 revenue came from its casino business.