The Stars Group eyes all possibilities to maximise US growth

Having outlined that he was “very pleased” with The Stars Group interim performance, Group CEO Rafi Ashkenazi, states that he is open to further partnerships when it comes to capitalising on US expansion.

Pending CMA approval, The Stars Group is on the brink of completing its $4.7 billion acquisition of Sky Bet, a transaction that will significantly strengthen its sports betting capabilities, as it seeks growth within the newly liberalised US betting market.

Updating investors on the group’s US mandate, Ashkenazi stated: “We are planning to launch with PokerStars. This is a really significant brand, a lot of equity in the U.S, so, PokerStars will be a part of our brand strategy for the U.S.

“As it comes to CasinoStars and BetStars, this is something that we’ll need to deal with tactically on a case by case or a state by state basis, as we move forward with our operations in the U.S.”

Analysing the marketing investment required to establish bequityitity, Ashkenazi added: “I think it’s too early to determine what would be the marketing investment in the states. We need to understand better the competitive landscape, we need to understand what is the equity that we currently have within our existing customer base.

“There are all sorts of different strategies that we need to consider, obviously cooperating with the land-based casinos that we are working with and potentially utilising some of their customer base. There are a lot of different activities and there are a lot of different strategies that we are considering. So, it’s too soon for us to determine what would be the marketing investment for the U.S. We will take through a measured approach.”

Marlon Goldstein BetStars’ Chief Legal Officer also spoke of the firm’s approach to the US market, emphasising that the firm is maintaining an open mind when it comes to potential partnerships: “As you’ve seen from our prepared remarks and our announcements, we have entered into an agreement to expand our offering in New Jersey to include sports betting.

“We have also entered into an arrangement to launch our verticals in Pennsylvania, two markets that we think will be very strong and very competitive for us as we are able to launch and operate all three of our verticals.”

Affirming that the brand is analysing all strategic approaches, when it comes to maximising partnerships, he continued: “We continue to evaluate opportunities to partner with other land based operators across the country, but we are being very selective and strategic in the way we evaluate these opportunities.

“We are talking to multi state operators, one-off casinos in select jurisdictions, tribal operators and media companies where we look to leverage our unique expertise through Sky Betting and Gaming, in partnering and collaborating with media that we have gained in the UK, which we think we can export to the US in a very meaningful way.

“We will keep a very watchful eye, we are very active here, but we do think there’s going to be an evolution over a number of years in this marketplace. We intend to be active in all aspects of the US market as it evolves and we will update everyone as that happens.”

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