Since its launch in the US last year, Betfred USA is quickly starting to make a name for itself having already launched two sports books, sponsored the Wilder vs Fury match and most recently, securing a sponsorship agreement with the Denver Broncos.
Betfred USA Chief Operating Officer Bryan Bennett spoke with SBC Americas about the Broncos agreement, the disruption to live sports, and how Betfred plans to become a household name across the US.
SBC Americas: The coronavirus pandemic has undoubtedly caused a massive disruption for the betting and gaming industry – how do you see the industry recovering in the coming months? Could the return of the NFL season be the saving grace?
Bryan Bennett: It’s no secret that the last 3 months have been brutal for the entire gaming industry including sports betting. While online sportsbooks have been able to sustain themselves on fringe sports, we need popular US team sports to return so that we can really get back to business.
Clearly the NFL is king when it comes to sports betting in the US, but NBA is very popular as well. The last week or so has been a bit of a concern as we see cases increase in some states, but I’m trying to remain positive that the fall is going to be a boon for the industry. If we can actually get the NBA, NHL and NFL all back, the Sep-Nov season could be one of most active sports betting time periods ever.
SBC Americas: With live sports largely cancelled or postponed, are there any particular markets that Betfred has seen a rise in activity on?
Bryan Bennett: I can only speak for Betfred USA, and we’re probably very different from others because we had not yet launched our online product when everything shut down. But since Iowa casinos reopened and we launched in Colorado, MMA is probably the top wagered sport in our retail sportsbooks. But while we’re seeing decent action on that sport, it pales in comparison to the big US team sports. So per my answer to the first question, we need NBA, NHL and NFL back to really see an uptick in volume.
SBC Americas: And what have been the pitfalls around offering markets on ‘unusual’ sports?
Bryan Bennett: We never really offered markets that would be considered unusual since we weren’t online at the time. I don’t begrudge other companies from doing so as they were the only sports available at the time and players want to make bets especially when there’s nothing else going on.
That said, it was short lived phenomena because it’s not like American bettors want to bet on random table tennis matches in Ukraine. Now that you have US sports returning like golf, NASCAR and MMA, that’s where the action is. The big European soccer leagues are doing well also.
SBC Americas: You recently accepted the first ever retail bet in Colorado at the Saratoga Casino – how do you plan to keep punters coming back to the Betfred sportsbook?
Bryan Bennett: The Betfred mantra in the UK has always been to provide superior value to sports bettors. We’re going to do the same here in the US and to make sure that all bettors have the best experience and get the best value when interacting with Betfred.
We’ve also created a fantastic player experience and will continue to build on that as we go so that bettors not only have access to the markets they want, but can then watch games in a fun and engaging environment.
SBC Americas: The Betfred-Denver Broncos partnership was announced earlier this week, how will this deal help Betfred become a household name in the US like it is in the UK?
Bryan Bennett: We believe that our relationship with the Broncos will immediately provide brand awareness for Betfred Sports. We’re definitely not a known entity at this time in the US, but the Broncos deal will change that.
The ability to ride along in tandem with one of the most popular sports franchises in the US will be a huge boost to our stature in Colorado and the US in general. We knew we had to do something big in Colorado to compete, and it doesn’t get any bigger than the Broncos.
Bryan Bennett is speaking at the upcoming SBC Digital Summit North America, as part of the Time to shine? The new sporting outlook panel. For more information on the event, click here.