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Sports Betting Giant DraftKings Goes Public Following Merger Deal – Variety

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Sports activities betting large DraftKings has develop into a public firm following approval of a merger with SBTech and Diamond Eagle Acquisition, the general public acquisition automobile headed by leisure {industry} veterans Harry Sloan and Jeff Sagansky.

The inventory opened Friday at $17.53 on the Nasdaq beneath the ticker image DKNG and rose above $18 in early buying and selling.

Shareholders of Diamond Eagle Acquisition Corp. accredited the merger Thursday with DraftKings, which describes itself as the one vertically built-in pure-play sports activities betting and on-line gaming firm primarily based in the US.

“Right now marks one other milestone for DraftKings and the way forward for digital sports activities leisure and gaming in America,” stated Jason Robins, co-founder and CEO of DraftKings. “By bringing collectively our main shopper model, information science experience and industry-leading merchandise with SBTech’s confirmed know-how platform, we are going to speed up our innovation, progress and scale. I’m assured that the brand new DraftKings will progress our aim of providing the perfect, most revolutionary sports activities and gaming merchandise to our prospects.”

Robins stated Friday that the corporate’s near-term outlook is unsure given the big selection of outcomes for sports activities throughout the coronavirus pandemic, however famous that DrafKings has entry to $500 million in unrestricted money to fund its operations.

“We acknowledge these are extraordinary occasions and we perceive that state governments within the U.S. are prioritizing the response to COVID-19, as they completely ought to be,” Robins stated. “Finally we do anticipate to start out and to return to a brand new regular. At the moment, we anticipate that the demand in states for authorized sports activities betting will resume.”

DraftKings has roughly 2,300 worldwide workers and can keep its world headquarters in Boston, in addition to further U.S.-based workplaces in Hoboken, Las Vegas, New York and San Francisco. The corporate may also have worldwide workplaces in Dublin, Kyiv, Plovdiv, Sofia and Tel Aviv.

The DraftKings deal was orchestrated by Sloan, who has launched six public acquisition automobiles with Sagansky since 2011. Diamond Eagle bowed in Might with a $400 million public providing. Robins may also function chairman with Sloan as vice chair.

Sloan served as chairman and CEO of MGM between 2005 and 2009 previous to the completion of its restructuring through a pre-packaged chapter. He was additionally the founder, chairman and CEO of SBS Broadcasting, Europe’s second-largest broadcaster. Sagansky labored for 3 many years in present enterprise, together with serving as president of CBS Leisure between 1990 and 1994, and as CEO of Paxson Communications from 1998 to 2003.

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