Sports broadcaster ESPN has entered into two separate multi-year agreements with Caesars Entertainment and DraftKings. Both deals include co-exclusive link integrations across ESPN digital platforms connecting fans to sportsbooks from Caesars Entertainment’s sports betting partner, William Hill, and DraftKings.
Under the terms of the new agreements, ESPN will broaden its relationships with both Caesars, as the exclusive odds provider and co-exclusive sportsbook link-out provider, and DraftKings, as the exclusive daily fantasy sports provider and co-exclusive sportsbook link-out provider.
Mike Morrison, Vice President of Business Development and Innovation, ESPN, said of the deals: “Our new agreements with Caesars and DraftKings collectively represent the next significant milestone for ESPN to diversify our exposure and deepen our commitment in the sports betting space.
“We began growing the experience through content, followed by odds utilizing William Hill’s sports betting data and a new state-of-the-art studio facility in Las Vegas through our deal with Caesars, and now with the addition of DraftKings, we are bringing together the sports media leader with two of the top brands and best products in the segment.”
As part of the new Caesars agreement, Caesars Sportsbook by William Hill will also become a sponsor of ESPN’s Fantasy products, deepening its relationship as ESPN’s exclusive odds provider. The news follows the recent launch of ESPN’s Las Vegas studio at The LINQ Hotel + Experience and its expanded content collaboration.
Caesars CEO Tom Reeg commented: “Caesars’ relationship with ESPN continues to deepen with the ability to directly link to sportsbooks from our partner, William Hill, from ESPN’s digital platforms.
“ESPN’s unparalleled reach provides a transformational opportunity for sports fans and enthusiasts to engage and wager at their fingertips. This new initiative closely followed the grand opening of the new ESPN Studio with Caesars at the center of the world-famous Las Vegas Strip.”
Under the new DraftKings deal, the DFS and sportsbook operator will also become ESPN’s exclusive daily fantasy sports and co-exclusive sportsbook link-out provider. Additionally, the firm will power integrations across all ESPN content, beginning with daily fantasy sports segments on ESPN’s premier studio shows.
“We are very excited to be expanding our relationship with ESPN to include deeper integration of both our sports betting and daily fantasy sports offerings across their platforms,” said Jason Robins, Co-Founder, Chairman and CEO of DraftKings. “ESPN’s reach amongst sports fans is unparalleled, and the start of NFL is the perfect time for DraftKings to be launching this integration.”
All sportsbook links will be geo-targeted to legalized sports betting states. Link integrations across digital platforms will include ESPN.com web and mobile web and the ESPN Fantasy app.
“Sports betting is quickly becoming endemic to the overall experience of the sports fan,” said Mark Walker, Senior Vice President of Business Development and Innovation, ESPN. “To us, that means greater opportunities to innovate and deliver the best and most seamless experience for fans, which will ultimately expand ESPN’s brand and audience and increase engagement. It is an industry that we will continue to actively pursue as it grows and evolves.”