Published: Thu, May 17, 2018
Business | By Kate Woods

Paddy Power Betfair in talks to buy Fanduel

Paddy Power Betfair in talks to buy Fanduel

United Kingdom and Ireland-based bookmaker Paddy Power Betfair is in discussions regarding a potential deal with a New York-based fantasy sports company FanDuel, according to latest reports.

The nation's highest court on Monday struck down the federal law that had barred single-game gambling in most of the country, saying it unconstitutionally forced states to maintain their prohibitions. JPMorgan Chase lifted their price objective on shares of Paddy Power Betfair from GBX 8,420 ($117.43) to GBX 8,690 ($121.20) and gave the company a "neutral" rating in a research report on Friday, January 12th.

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In a statement following reports in the financial press about the talks, Paddy Power-Betfair said that "discussions are ongoing, and there is no certainty as to whether agreement will be reached, or as to the terms or timing of any transaction". FanDuel, on the other hand, is a popular USA brand with a large number of members, so the deal would put PPB in a position of strength.

An online casino and a horse racing betting exchange are also offered by the operator in the state of New Jersey. New Jersey is among the states expected to enact legislation within weeks.

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FanDuel was part of merger discussion past year with rival DraftKings but the plan was scrapped in July after a legal challenge by the US Federal Trade Commission.

FanDuel was valued at more than $1 billion before the crackdown began. If the FanDuel deal goes through, it would not be the company's first move into the US market. This decision allows us to bring the passion and engagement we have seen among our users to new and expanded marketplaces and create a sports betting product that fans will love.

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Such websites have slipped through the net of the USA ban on sports betting because they are seen as games of skill rather than of chance but an alliance would help Paddy Power push betting products through the site.

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