The ‘natural link’ between sports and the betting and gaming industries poses huge commercial opportunities in Latin American markets, according to Better Collective South America CEO, Simon Hovman-Stilling.

Speaking to SBC Media following the Danish publisher’s acquisition of high-profile Latin American sports media business Playmaker Capital, Hovmand-Stilling discusses the firm’s fan engagement mission and market leadership ambitions.

What is the significance of this acquisition to Better Collective’s global vision and growth formula?

With the acquisition of the strong sports media within Playmaker Capital, which on average has attracted more than 200 million visits each month and commands a social media following of more than 180 million across Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok and X, we take market leadership in South America and enhance our North American market leadership. This aligns perfectly with our strategy to acquire leading national brands in local markets with a loyal audience.

With Playmaker Capital, we gain a significantly stronger position across South America, which I am truly excited about and will bring us a significant step closer towards realising our vision to become the leading digital sports media group. 

What role have digital sports media platforms played in the continuing development of the Latin American betting sector thus far?

Sport and sports betting are naturally linked across many geographies and regulated markets and sports where sportsbooks e.g. are sponsors of sports teams and seek to activate their brands in a relevant context. 

As a digital sports media group on a mission to excite sports fans and engage passionate communities worldwide, we e.g. support creating transparency in the sports betting market for sports fans that look for an engaging sports experience. 

Is acquiring local market leaders a tried and tested strategy for businesses seeking opportunities in emerging markets?

This is definitely the strategy we are pursuing, having seen great traction with this model in first Europe and then North America. We fundamentally believe that in order for us to be successful and be the market leader in South America, we need to understand each local market, its characteristics and not least have local talent and a local organisation to execute on the strategy.

How close is Better Collective to achieving its world-leading digital sports media group status objective?

We continue executing strongly on this strategy – but like with all visions this is not something you realise overnight. It takes years of hard work and dedication. 

That said, the acquisition of Playmaker Capital has, of course, brought us a significant step closer towards realising that vision. Now we need to keep the foot on the pedal and continue executing on our strategy.

Can you delve into the growth prospects of, as the key property highlighted on the M&A notice?

It is still too early to speak about the specifics. What I can say is that we are very excited to get to work with strong brands such as Bolavip, Redgol and SomosFanaticos – and not least all the skilled people who have developed these brands into what they are today. Needless to say we see a lot of synergies, and this is what we will focus on in the integration process.  

The majority of South American markets are yet to settle rules on advertising – is this a concern for Better Collective having acquired new properties?

With Playmaker Capital, we open a lot of non-endemic (non-gambling partners) business opportunities which we find super interesting and which goes well in line with our strategy and vision. This will bolster our position and lower the risks in the market as we activate more revenue streams and become less dependent on igaming regulation. 

We however continue monitoring the igaming regulatory landscape closely and have throughout the years, built a strong legal and compliance setup that enables us to operate globally within local legal frameworks.

Click HERE to read the full Q&A on SBC News

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