SBC News Genius Sports strikes data partnership with Canadian Football League

Genius Sports strikes data partnership with Canadian Football League

Genius Sports and the Canadian Football League (CFL) have entered into a commercial data partnership, granting the company exclusive content for international sports betting operators.

Predicted to come into effect in January 2022, the agreement will enable Genius to leverage  CFL data and video content for commercial purposes including for its sportsbook partners – building on its betting distribution deals with the National Football League (NFL) and English Premier League – whilst also working to assist the league in capitalising on the North American sports betting market.

Additionally, Genius will also acquire a minority stake in the CFL’s new venture unit, CFL Ventures, enabling the firm to benefit ‘strategically and financially’ from any international growth the league experiences as a result of the firm’s data support.

Mark Locke, CEO of Genius Sports, said: “By providing the CFL with an incredible range of sports technology solutions, Genius Sports is setting a new precedent for sports partnerships.

“Together, we will revolutionise the entire CFL product, delivering truly immersive experiences for their existing fans and attracting new audiences who crave year-round, top-flight football action.”

By partnering with Genius, the CFL aims to leverage the company’s data ecosystem with the goal of “transforming its relationships with fans, sportsbooks, and media in North America and globally”. 

The CFL’s deal with the London-based sports data and technology firm will see Genius provide the league with ‘a wide range of technology and services’ to engage global audiences and support its expansion plans in the US and elsewhere.

Provisions include live broadcast augmentation, data tracking tools, targeted and personalised fan engagement solutions, cross-platform streaming capabilities, play-by-play and scoreboard data collection technology, coaching analytics products and integrity services. 

Genius plans to power the CFL’s digital infrastructure using the above offerings, which were consolidated over the past year through a number of major acquisitions including Second Spectrum, Spirable, FanHub and Sportzcast.

“Our partnership with Genius Sports has the potential to launch a new era for the CFL,” remarked Randy Ambrosie, Commissioner of the Canadian Football League. 

“It provides access to the technology and tools we need to engage our existing fans, and reach new ones, in exciting, innovative and highly customised ways. 

This goes beyond transforming our marketing. It can redefine our relationship with fans, partners and other key stakeholders, here in Canada and globally.”

The agreement marks a further expansion of Genius’ North American strategy, following on from its aforementioned data deal with the NFL and its successful registration on the US Nasdaq Stock Exchange as GENI.

Despite these positive developments, the firm did experience a slump on the NYSE during November, prompting the company’s leadership to purchase over 280,000 GENI common shares – CEO Locke specifically bought 50,000 GENI shares at a projected cost of $10.02 per share, equating to roughly $500,000.

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