Paddy Power Becomes Headline Sponsor for ITV Racing

By Martin Green03 January 2021
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Paddy Power Becomes Headline Sponsor for ITV Racing

Paddy Power Commits to Live Racing Deal

Paddy Power has taken over from William Hill as the title sponsor of live racing on ITV after signing a two-year deal with the broadcaster. The agreement also sees sister brand Betfair become the sponsor of The Opening Show, ITV’s magazine programme.

William Hill had sponsored ITV Racing from 2017, when the channel won the rights to the coverage. ITV will continue as the exclusive broadcaster until at least 2023, with Paddy Power serving as the headline sponsor.

Marketing director Michelle Spillane said: “ITV Racing has been brilliant for the sport for the last four years and we viewed it as a natural synergy to become headline sponsor for the Bafta award-winning show.

“We’re looking forward to working with the immensely talented ITV team for at least the next two years and it’s great to be an integral part of a presentation that produces sporting history for our customers week in and week out.”

Parent company Flutter Entertainment has also completed a deal to increase its stake in US brand FanDuel to 95%. It paid Fastball Holdings £3.13 billion to acquire its 37.2% interest in the group.

“Flutter’s initial acquisition of a controlling stake in FanDuel in 2018 has been transformational for the shape of the group,” said chief executive Peter Jackson. “Our number one position in the crucial US market is built on many of the assets we acquired through that transaction, supported by the broader group’s capabilities. Our intention has always been to increase our stake in the business and I’m delighted to be able to do so earlier than originally planned and at a discount to its closest peer [DraftKings].”

William Hill Snaps Up Alfabet

William Hill has acquired a majority stake in Colombian operator Alfabet S.A.S. for an undisclosed sum. Colombia becomes the ninth market in which the firm is active. Alfabet has been in operation since 2018, and it holds a Coljuegos licence to offer sports betting and online casino gaming across the country.

“We are delighted to announce our acquisition of a majority share in Alfabet S.A.S, and with it, our first entry into a regulated Latin American state,” said William Hill chief executive Ulrik Bengtsson. “The Colombian regulated market is a role model for the Latin American gambling sector, and we are excited by this opportunity to deliver a very competitive product and safe player experience under the William Hill brand in the country.”

William Hill is in the process of being taken over by US firm Caesars Entertainment. The antitrust period has been cleared, paving the way for the deal to be wrapped up. However, Caesars plans to immediately sell all non-US operations, which currently make up the vast majority of the firm’s turnover, once the deal is completed. William Hill launched its Mr Green brand in Latvia last week.

Entain Bolsters Board of Directors

Ladbrokes owner Entain has appointed chief governance officer Robert Hoskin to the board of directors following a 16-year career at the firm. Hoskin is a chartered company secretary and has a law degree from the University College London. He led the Investment Company Secretariat at Aberdeen Asset Management, before joining Entain in 2005.

Hoskin has been “instrumental to the group’s growth and development” in that time, overseeing its corporate governance, legal and regulatory requirements across more than 20 countries in five continents. “Robert has made an outstanding contribution to Entain in his 15 years at the group,” said chairman Barry Gibson. “He is responsible for regulation, legal and governance, all of which are central to our long-term growth plans to build a responsible and sustainable business of global scale and world class standards.”

Entain was formerly known as GVC Holdings. It also owns Coral, Bwin, Sportingbet, Foxy Bingo and several other popular brands.