FanDuel announced two new sports partnerships on Monday, including one with the NHL as a whole and another with the New Jersey Devils specifically. Advertising features heavily in both partnerships as FanDuel races to pick up market share in the legal sports betting and fantasy sports markets in the United States.
FanDuel’s Deal with the NHL
FanDuel’s deal with the NHL makes FanDuel the league’s exclusive fantasy sports partner and an official betting partner of the league as a whole.
The fantasy side of the deal is exclusive to FanDuel and will allow the site to host special NHL-themed contests with prizes geared towards hockey fans such as VIP invitations to the NHL Winter Classic, the All-Star Game and select games during the season.
FanDuel will also be hosting special single-game contests with prizes to “marquee matchups” including again the Winter Classic, the NHL Stadium Series and more. FanDuel fantasy customers will also be given access to “exclusive league content” and more.
FanDuel Fantasy will soon get things underway with a “Skate to the NHL Winter Classic” promotion that will invite players to special contests where the prizes on offer include a VIP trip to the 2019 Winter Classic at Notre Dame Stadium on New Year’s Day.
The sports betting side of the deal with the league will give FanDuel Sportsbook access to real-time data straight from the NHL as well as allow the NHL some say over which types of sports bets FanDuel may offer on NHL games. This portion of the deal makes FanDuel an “official betting partner” but is not exclusive.
Matt King, CEO of FanDuel Group, praised the partnership with the following statement:
“Joining forces with the National Hockey League was the perfect next step for us as both our sports betting and fantasy sports businesses continue to grow. The League’s clear vision for these categories and this partnership marks an exciting time for both organizations.”
This agreement mirrors a deal signed between the league and MGM Resorts last month. In that deal, MGM also gained access to league data and will be able to leverage NHL imagery in its sports betting properties across the United States.
FanDuel’s Agreement with the New Jersey Devils
FanDuel Sportsbook has signed a separate agreement with the New Jersey Devils primarily revolving around advertising rights. A Devils press release issued on Monday explains that the deal will give FanDuel advertising placement on NJ Devils social media and other digital platforms.
The deal also gives FanDuel prime advertising real estate with an in-ice logo at Prudential Center that will be visible during all regular-season home games. The Devils press release also notes this deal will allow FanDuel Sportsbook to advertise its in-play betting options along with other company branding and messaging.
FanDuel Group COO Kip Levin said this in a statement on Monday:
“We will continue to be at the forefront of the action for hockey fans, whether they’re watching sports from a seat in the arena or at home on TV. Our partnership with the New Jersey Devils allows us to be on the ice during the action and in-game messaging is the perfect way to reach hockey fans during the games.”
Third Deal of Its Type
This deal with the Devils is not exclusive to FanDuel and is in fact the third advertising agreement between an NHL team and a sports betting operator. Less than two weeks ago, the NJ Devils and William Hill announced an agreement of their own.
That agreement includes in-arena advertising in addition to launching the William Hill Sports Lounge inside Prudential Center that will cater to sports betting fans with more than 20 screens dedicated to sports coverage, odds displays and William Hill reps on-hand to assist bettors in placing wagers through the William Hill mobile betting app.
In September, the Las Vegas Golden Knights reached a similar deal with William Hill. In that deal, the Golden Knights agreed to grant William Hill in-arena advertising and visibility on various Golden Knight media platforms as well as sponsorship of the line change display on the ribbon board at T-Mobile Arena.
The NHL has teams in two states where sports betting is now legal and underway (New Jersey and Nevada), and both teams have now signed advertising agreements with sports betting operators.
If these recent agreements are a start of a trend, the next NHL teams to watch for more deals of this type are those in New York and Pennsylvania. That includes the Buffalo Sabres, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Pittsburgh Penguins and Philadelphia Flyers.
Both states have passed sports betting legislation, but both are waiting for further action before giving the green light to local sportsbooks. Between those two states, Pennsylvania is on the short list with sports betting there anticipated to start within weeks. New York still has some legislative work to do before sports betting can get underway there.