Fanatics Buys PointsBet American Sports Betting Operations for $150 Million

pointsbet legal states


  • Fanatics has been aggressively growing into the sports betting market
  • PointsBet projected around $80 million in operational losses in North America in 2023
  • Fanatics plans to couple its sports betting platform with its existing online marketplace

Fanatics announced Sunday night it agreed to purchase PointsBet’s American operations for roughly $150 million as it continues to jump head-first into legal sports betting

PointsBet hired an investment bank to help lead its sale a couple of weeks ago and has settled on Fanatics, an online manufacturer and retailer of various sports memorabilia. However, Fanatics has been increasingly focused on growing into sports betting and now has the assets to jump-start that interest. 

Fanatics will gain access to at least 15 states as part of the deal. It plans to have its operations in most of the states up-and-running in time for the NFL season kick-off.

Signing the dotted line

The deal is not 100 percent over the line just yet, but there is confidence from both sides that it will be finalized soon.

“Fanatics and PointsBet are excited to enter into an agreement for Fanatics Betting and Gaming to acquire PointsBet's U.S. business," Fanatics and PointsBet said in a joint statement. "While there are still several steps in the process to complete the acquisition, both parties are confident in the outcome. Fanatics Betting and Gaming and PointsBet will provide further details of the proposed deal and timely updates in the coming weeks.”

PointsBet became open to the idea of a sale after second-half forecasts predicted the company would lose around $80 million in U.S. operations, whereas its main gig in Australia was more profitable. 

Part of the company’s struggle in North America came from heavy competition from the big four of FanDuel, DraftKings, BetMGM, and Caesars, which dominate the sports betting market. PointsBet poured tons of resources into marketing efforts to help combat the disparity in patronage but ultimately found it unsustainable and unprofitable. 

Fanatics is not worried about PointsBet’s marketing struggles because of its community of a reported 95 million fans that are already in place. It believes that it has its foot in the door with those people and will be able to tie a sportsbook into the other areas of its online sites, such as trading cards and sports gear. 

Fanatics plans to offer jerseys, trading cards, hats, and other items as rewards for sportsbooks patronage. There is also a possibility those different areas are tied together in a package.

The road ahead

Fanatics unveiled its sports betting app in Tennessee and Ohio at the end of April. Only its customers were allowed early access to the launch, but the idea was to expand its reach and jurisdiction.

The company has grown extremely fast in recent years. Its $6.2 billion valuation in August 2020 ballooned to $31 billion by December 2022, which allowed it to be more aggressive in the acquisition market (as seen with the purchase of trading card company Topps for $500 million last year).

CEO Michael Rubin said that he expects the company to become profitable by 2025 or 2026 and has already thrown around the idea of expanding overseas.

"This is a 10-year journey," Matt King, the CEO of Fanatics Betting, said at the SBC Summit North America last week "We're going to move very methodically through that 10-year journey. And by doing that and taking that approach, it allows you to be a bit more considered in your decisions.”

PointsBet had previously made a $500 million deal with NBCUniversal that made the media giant its official partner and also granted it a 4.9% stake in the company. It will receive the appropriate compensation from the Fanatics sale.

PointsBet also had an affiliate deal in place with the University of Colorado that was recently abandoned due to public outcry and because the American Gaming Association outlawed partnerships between betting companies and universities except for in the case of promoting responsible gambling.

Fanatics previously projected $8 billion in revenue in 2023. It will have its first chance to offer NFL betting with its new assets when the Detroit Lions face the defending champion Kansas City Chiefs in Arrowhead on Thursday, September 7.

Grant is a sports and sports betting journalist who prides himself in his up-to-the-minute reporting on the latest events in the industry. A member of Virginia Tech’s 2021 graduating class, he has quickly put together an impressive portfolio since moving to the professional world full-time. Grant’s favorite sports to cover are basketball and both types of football (American and soccer), and he is pushing written, audio, and video content. He has been employed by companies as highly regarded as Forbes and continues on a great trajectory in the industry. When he’s not on the clock, you can find Grant at the gym, looking for adventures, or hanging out with his family.