Sinclair Broadcast Group recently informed fans through Twitter that they will be partnering up with Bally’s Corporation to bring sports betting into the homes of mainstream America. Sinclair officials believe that the transformational partnership will make a tremendous difference in the United States sports betting and iGaming industry.
The Sinclair Broadcast Group-Bally’s Corporation partnership entails Bally’s integrating their content into Sinclair’s local TV stations, STIRR, Tennis Channel, sports networks, and Stadium. The merger will create unrivaled content on sports gamification countrywide. Bally’s will gain a remarkable share of the sports betting and iGaming markets in the United States. The partnership comes on the heels of Bally’s and Sinclair partnering to acquire an iGaming platform called Bet.Works. Sinclair Broadcast Group expressed that there would be a rebranding of the 21 FOX Regional Sports Networks using the Bally name.
Sinclair Broadcast Group’s partnership with Bally’s integrates the casino operator’s online sports betting technology into the 21 regional sports networks recently acquired from Fox plus Sinclair’s 191 local television stations across 89 markets. Now, 70% of all American households will have the opportunity to participate in the sports betting activities brought to them by this strategic partnership. Now, Americans will have the chance to get a first-of-its-kind interactive sports-viewing experience with Sinclair-Bally’s collaboration, only furthering the gamification of sports betting for fans.
The Shifting Legal Tide for Sports Betting in America
The partnership has made it clear how influential sports betting is becoming in the US. Consumer attitudes toward sports betting have shifted transformatively over the last decade, with most states now legalizing the activity within their borders. Maryland, only in the month prior, approved a referendum allowing sport’s betting in the state. Sinclair Broadcast Group is a Maryland-native company and still resides in Hunt Valley. Maryland residents can expect to be betting on sports from the comfort of their homes very soon. Sports betting is something to anticipate with Chicago Cubs’ Marquee Network shortly since the state of Illinois recently recognized the activity as legal. Several other states around the country have legalized sports betting action in some form or another as the legislation came to many state’s attention over the last two years.
Texas, Florida, and California represent three crucial parts of the country where sports betting has yet to legalize. These states hold the country’s highest populations and become critical to this sports gamification movement’s nationwide success. Many experts believe that the Sinclair Broadcast Group-Bally’s Corp. partnership may be just the strategic move needed to push these states and their legislators to move forward with the rest of the country in legalizing the activity.
A New Interactive Relationship for Fans with the Favorite Sports Teams
Sinclair Broadcast Group’s president and CEO, Chris Ripley, believes the Bally’s partnership will transform people’s way of receiving and interacting with live sports across the company’s platforms, especially as the U.S. sports betting and interactive gambling markets grow.
“Bally’s, with its strong brand name, premier sportsbook technology platform, and expansive market access, is the perfect partner,” Ripley announced, “By integrating gamification elements that allow audiences a more personalized and interactive game experience, consumers of live sports in the future can look forward to a more dynamic and engaging sports viewing experience.”
Other Transactional Highlights of the Sinclair-Bally’s Partnership
- Sinclair’s 21 regional sports networks, once the Fox Regional Sports Networks, will rebrand with Bally’s Name front and center.
- Bally’s, with the Sinclair partnership and the earlier acquisition of Bet.Works positions itself to capture a significant share of the estimated future $50 billion U.S. sports betting and iGaming market opportunity, according to Wall Street analyst research.
- Bally’s will integrate content into the 190 television stations owned or operated by Sinclair Broadcast Group, allowing both companies to add a new revenue stream marketing. The companies will collaborate in designing and incorporating products on a state-by-state basis while delivering a unique state-of-the-art interactive gaming experience to viewers in their homes week after week.
- Over the 10-year term of the partnership, Sinclair Broadcast Group’s regional sports network portfolio will receive annual naming rights fees, and a committed percentage of Bally’s Interactive marketing spend
- Full strategic and economic alignment with Sinclair receiving warrants and options, subject to regulatory approval and other conditions, to own a minority stake in Bally’s
- Sinclair will receive penny warrants to claim 14.9% of Bally’s common shares and warrants to purchase up to a total of an additional 10% of Bally’s common shares contingent on the achievement of specific performance metrics. Sinclair Broadcast Group also receives options to purchase 5% of Bally’s common shares in four tranches which Sinclair can use after four years.
Chris Ripley, President and CEO of Sinclair, commented, “Bally’s, with its strong brand name, premier sportsbook technology platform, and expansive market access, is the perfect partner to help us change the paradigm of sports viewing across all our assets. By integrating gamification elements that allow audiences a more personalized and
interactive game experience, consumers of live sports in the future can look forward to a more dynamic and engaging sports viewing experience. With the U.S. sports betting and iGaming market expected to reach ~$50 billion at maturity ultimately, this partnership perfectly positions our sports portfolio to capitalize on changing audience behavior altogether.”
Child Safety Precautions Around Sports Betting in the Home
Parents with small children produce a valid concern about the introduction of sports betting directly into the home. Bringing gambling activities into the house through the television media is risky and might not be the best option for their kids. Some parents worry this is not the type of content they should subject their children to at a young age.
Sinclair CEO Chris Ripley addressed the idea of bringing gambling into the home where children would be more susceptible to the activity. Sinclair is aware that some children are not yet at the age that their parents would want to introduce them to the concept of gambling. Ripley assured the media that Sinclair would take great lengths to child-proof all interactive gaming broadcast aspects. Child safety settings will add protection to allow children to watch but not be susceptible to the sports betting aspects. Sinclair Broadcast Group hopes to provide the full interactive experience while keeping every aspect of it family-friendly from the kickoff to the final buzzer.
The Future of Sports Television is Almost Here by Sinclair Broadcast
Sinclair Broadcast Group and Bally’s seem to have struck gold in their efforts to push the interactive gamification of sports betting into the mainstream and on to almost every American household in the nation. As the pandemic lightens with the vaccine taking hold in America, sports leagues can hopefully all get back to their regular schedules in 2021. Then, Americans can integrate this new sports betting component into their Sunday afternoon baseball games and their Monday night football games or provides thanks to Sinclair Broadcast Group and Bally’s Corp.
About Sinclair Broadcast Group, Inc.
Sinclair is a diversified media company and leading provider of local sports and news. The Company owns and/or operates 23 regional sports network brands; owns, operates, and/or provides services to 190 television stations in 88 markets; is a leading local news provider in the country; owns multiple national networks; and has TV stations affiliated with all the major broadcast networks. Sinclair delivers content via various platforms, including over-the-air, multi-channel video program distributors, and digital media. The Company regularly uses its website as a key source of Company information you can access at www.sbgi.net.
About Bally’s Corporation of Sinclair Broadcast
Bally’s Corporation currently owns ten casinos across six states, a horse racetrack, and 13 authorized OTB licenses in Colorado. With more than 5,400 employees, the Company’s operations include 11,859 slot machines, 405 game tables, and 2,538 hotel rooms. Properties include Twin River Casino Hotel (Lincoln, RI), Tiverton Casino Hotel (Tiverton, RI), Hard Rock Hotel & Casino (Biloxi, MS), Casino Vicksburg (Vicksburg, MS), Dover Downs Hotel & Casino (Dover, DE), Bally’s Atlantic City (Atlantic City, NJ), Casino KC (Kansas City, MO), Golden Gates Casino (Black Hawk, CO), Golden Gulch Casino (Black Hawk, CO), Mardi Gras Casino (Black Hawk, CO), and Arapahoe Park racetrack (Aurora, CO). Following the completion of pending acquisitions, which include Tropicana Evansville (Evansville, IN), Jumer’s Casino & Hotel (Rock Island, IL), Eldorado Shreveport Resort and Casino (Shreveport, LA), and MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa (Lake Tahoe, NV), the Company will own and manage 14 casinos across ten states. Its shares trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “BALY.”