Strong Bet

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    • Penn National Gaming optimistic with Barstool betting app on horizon.

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Penn National Gaming’s second quarter revenue declined 75% year-over-year, but shares jumped 13% yesterday following its earnings report. Enthusiasm for the stock is largely based on the company’s current recovery from the pandemic — 39 of 41 casino properties have reopened — and optimism around the launch of the Barstool Sports betting app.

The $163 million acquisition of 36% of Barstool Sports in January has paid dividends for Penn National, which has seen its stock grow 65% since the start of 2020. This week, the company launched PlayBarstool, which features free-to-play games and subsequently shot up to No. 1 on the App Store. PlayBarstool will help users transition into the Barstool Sports Book app later this year.

An ability to deepen engagement with bettors both digitally and physically has been a major focus for operators, so securing a media platform with a fervent following was a prescient move for Penn National. Barstool has a self-reported 66 million monthly user reach, 62% of whom bet on sports.