Playmaker acquisitions fueled productive quarter for Better Collective

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It was another solid quarter for affiliate company Better Collective. Total revenues were up 26.5% YoY with €75.4 million compared to €59.7 million during the same period in 2022.

CEO Jesper Søgaard discussed a quartet of important acquisitions and the shift of US partnerships into revenue share as drivers of quarter performance.

At the start of the quarter, Better Collective announced the acquisition of North American media group Playmaker HQ. The group ended the quarter with the acquisition of the similarly named Playmaker Capital. Søgaard heaped plenty of praise on the Playmaker Capital acquisition during the earnings call.

“Joining forces means that we can now establish an even more structured entry and presence in the South American market, while also strengthening our leading position in North America. Over the years, Playmaker has built an incredibly strong sports media brand and excited sports fans across the Americas with high-quality sports content to cultivate a loyal and dedicated following. Combined, its portfolio attracts more than 200 million visits a month and commence a social media following of more than 180 million,” Søgaard noted.

The deal was the second-largest in the company’s history, trailing only its acquisition of The Action Network. With the addition of the Playmaker Capital family of sites, the Better Collective network now produces 380 million viewers a month. The deal should fully close in Q1 of 2024.

Better Collective CFO Flemming Pedersen discussed the planned shift of North American contracts from CPA to revenue share and did acknowledge that the shift would result in lower up-front revenues for the next year or so. However, the company believes revenue share agreements or hybrid agreements where a portion of the payment for an acquisition up front will leave the company in a healthier position moving forward.

Pederson also noted that, while growth has slowed in more mature states like New Jersey, GGR in states continues to grow across the board.

Søgaard also discussed the impact of the switch from Barstool to ESPN Bet for the company. For Q3, it negatively impacted revenues, as Barstool was no longer using affiliates, but the company is positioned well to benefit from the launch of the rebranded ESPN Bet app.