Land-based gaming and casino operator Bally’s Corporation has entered into an agreement to buy North American fantasy sports company Monkey Knife Fight (MKF).
The deal makes Bally’s the third sports betting company in the US to have its own fantasy sports segment, alongside FanDuel and DraftKings.
Under the terms of the all-stock transaction, which is worth around $90 million, MKF will receive exercisable penny warrants to purchase approximately $50 million in Bally’s common shares, as well as the right to buy another $40 million over the next two years.
“Since our inception, we have distinguished ourselves from competitors by providing the best experiences for our valued players, forming strategic partnerships with teams, ownership groups and players unions, and acquiring strategic assets to bolster our position in the market,” explained Bill Asher, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Monkey Knife Fight.
“I am immensely proud of all we have accomplished over the past three years at MKF and am confident that the talented Bally’s team has what it takes to continue to grow and develop what is already a great business.”
According to a joint statement, Bally’s said that the acquisition of MKF was part of its “long-term growth and diversification strategy’ to ‘become the first truly vertically integrated sports betting and iGaming company in the US with a B2B2C business model’.
George Papanier, President and Chief Executive Officer of Bally’s Corporation, added: “With this acquisition, we are pleased to enter into the high-growth DFS market. Monkey Knife Fight is a unique asset that we look forward to incorporating into Bally’s constantly growing omnichannel portfolio of land-based casinos and iGaming platforms.
“As with all of the properties and services that fall under the iconic Bally’s brand, we are committed to providing a best-in-class DFS platform to sports fans around the country.”
MKF is the third largest daily fantasy sports company, with up to 180,000 registered users and 80,000 depositing players, spanning 37 states. Last year, the firm allowed National Football League (NFL) players to take a stake in the company through an agreement with OneTeam Partners.
Most recently, MFK pledged to donate $1,000 to the Kings Care Foundation for every goal the LA Kings scores this season, for a minimum of $100,000. The fantasy sports platform also has partnerships in place with NFL franchise Miami Dolphins and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, along with Major League Soccer’s (MLS) LA Galaxy, and a handful of Major League Baseball (MLB) teams.