Just days after reporting major 2022 losses in its interactive division, Bally’s is shutting down its daily fantasy sports product, Monkey Knife Fight.
The Monkey Knife Fight Twitter account posted the following Tuesday morning:
Bally’s purchased Monkey Knife Fight in early 2021 for approximately $90 million. Bally’s CEO at the time, George Papanier, lauded the deal for MKF’s customer database, which he said, “will provide Bally’s with a significant advantage in launching its own B2C sports betting operations.”
The Monkey Knife Fight purchase was part of a number of high-profile acquisitions for Bally’s around that time, including the $125 million purchase of online sports betting platform Bet.Works. At the time, Monkey Knife Fight was the third-biggest fantasy site in the US.
On the company’s most recent earnings call, newly appointed CEO Robeson Reeves spoke about how the company made a mistake with the Bet.Works purchase.
Reeves also said the company would focus more on verticals they excel at, namely online casinos. The company acquired Gamesys in October 2021, which beefed up the company’s online casino portfolio.
“With a thousand plus developers, me and my team, having a tight grip on priorities is how we’ll move faster and deliver near and long-term results to investors. In North America, our upward trajectory on icasino continues,” Reeves said.
With the focus on online casino in the United States, the conversion opportunities from DFS players to Bally Casino are simply not as present as they are for Bally Bet Sportsbook.
There were rumors Bally’s was looking to sell the DFS company, but it appears there were no takers and the company is shuttering the brand.
Monkey Knife Fight and Bet.Works are two of several acquisitions for Bally’s. Other M&A activity included the Association of Volleyball Professionals, the poker livestream Live at the Bike, and free-to-play games solutions Telescope and Sportcaller.