Penn Entertainment has successfully completed the migration of its Barstool Sportsbook & Casino brand onto its proprietary online gaming technology platform.

The migration “is a major achievement that brings all components of its online gaming operation in-house and significantly enhances the Barstool Sportsbook product offering,” Penn said.

Migration background

Penn first acquired a 36% stake in Barstool Sports in 2020, before agreeing to exercise call rights to acquire the remaining shares in the business in 2022.

Throughout that time and until now, the brand had been powered by third-party software from sportsbook supplier Kambi.

Penn has long planned to migrate the Barstool Sportsbook brand away from Kambi and onto its own tech stack, which it acquired as part of its $2bn acquisition of Canada-based theScore in 2021.

TheScore Bet – which had previously been powered by another third-party supplier in Bet.Works – first made the migration onto the proprietary tech platform in July 2022, with Barstool set to follow suit this year.

Improved operations

The migration has now been completed across all 16 US states where Barstool Sportsbook currently operates.

Penn said “the platform deployment and product upgrade completes Penn’s long-term strategic objective to achieve technology independence.”

The new tech stack improves platform stability and is designed to be easily scalable to expand into new markets and meet evolving regulatory requirements, it added.

“Deploying our technology infrastructure puts our experienced in-house team, who built the platform from the ground up, in full control of the end-to-end customer journey and all product development.”
Penn Interactive head Benjie Levy

Further, the new platform has brought several upgrades to the Barstool app, including improved navigation and search, more betting markets, greater personalisation capabilities, faster load, deposit and withdrawal times, and deeper integrations with theScore media app.

In order to complete the migration, Penn had to pay additional one-time fees to Kambi, including a $12.5m early termination fee and a further $15m for transition services.

Despite the extra costs, Penn insisted the migration would “significantly enhance” its product offering.

Management commentary

“Migrating onto our proprietary technology platform and introducing a fully upgraded Barstool Sportsbook is a milestone achievement,” said Jay Snowden, president and CEO of Penn Entertainment. 

“Having full control of our product and roadmap will lead to improved operational efficiency and the ability to quickly introduce new features, bespoke promotions and wagering markets. 

“I want to congratulate our Interactive team members who worked tirelessly to ensure a successful on schedule migration, which better positions us to compete in the online gaming space,” Snowden concluded.

Benjie Levy, head of Penn Interactive and president and COO of theScore, added: “A technology migration of this scale requires an enormous amount of coordination and planning, and I’m extremely proud of our Interactive team who stepped up to the challenge to execute this complex project on time and with minimal disruption to customers.

“Deploying our technology infrastructure puts our experienced in-house team, who built the platform from the ground up, in full control of the end-to-end customer journey and all product development. 

“With this proven technology powering a significantly enhanced Barstool Sportsbook, we are primed to deliver a world class online sportsbook and casino experience to customers in the US.”

A New York City broker has been charged with insider trading on deals including Penn National Gaming’s $2.2bn takeover of Score Media and Gaming.

The acquisition, which completed in October 2021, saw Penn purchase the Toronto-based media company and adjacent theScore Bet sportsbook brand for use in Canada.

Jordan Meadow, a broker for Spartan Capital Securities, used insider information obtained by his friend Steven Teixeira to profit on the deal.

Meadow allegedly bought more than 769 call option contracts prior to the transaction, generating more than $5m in eventual profit for his clients, according to the allegations.

The charges against Meadow were made public on 29 July 2023 as US federal prosecutors continue to aggressively clampdown on the crime.

Meadow pleaded not guilty to several counts of securities fraud and one count of conspiracy in a hearing on Thursday afternoon in Manhattan. He was released on a $1m bond.

Teixeira, meanwhile, has pleaded guilty to 12 offences, including securities fraud, as part of a cooperation deal with the US government.

Teixeira allegedly took the insider information from his girlfriend’s laptop while they were both working from home during the Covid-19 pandemic, before sharing it with Meadow via an intermediary.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Teixeira’s girlfriend was a former Morgan Stanley employee.

Meadow is understood to have offered Teixeira presents including Rolex watches in exchange for the leaked information.

In June of last year, the SEC charged an ex-Penn employee with alleged insider trading, again relating to the US operator’s purchase of theScore.

David Roda, a former software engineer at digital subsidiary Penn Interactive Ventures, allegedly took advantage of confidential information before purchasing 500 out-of-money call options on Score Media in the period leading up to the acquisition.

Penn Entertainment has today completed the acquisition of Barstool Sports after previously acquiring a 36% stake in the company back in February 2020.

Penn, which operates the Barstool Sportsbook in the US online sports betting market, acquired the remaining interest for approximately $388m, taking the total purchase price to around $550m.

Background on Barstool

Founded in 2003 as a free sports and gambling newspaper by controversial online personality Dave Portnoy, Barstool has evolved into a leading digital platform of sports, lifestyle, and entertainment content across the US.

With more than 200 million followers on social media, the company creates and delivers sports and comedy content through its extensive network of over 100 shows and podcasts.

This network has been utilised as a low-cost customer acquisition channel for Penn in recent years.

The Barstool Sportsbook is currently live in 15 states, with Penn also having launched retail branded Barstool Sportsbooks at its land-based properties across the US.

“Barstool is a proven, powerful media brand with an authentic voice and vast, loyal audience that provides us with a strong top of funnel for new customer acquisition and organic cross-selling opportunities.”

Penn Entertainment CEO Jay Snowden said: “Barstool is a proven, powerful media brand with an authentic voice and vast, loyal audience that provides us with a strong top of funnel for new customer acquisition and organic cross-selling opportunities across our growing interactive division.”

Penn has adopted a similar strategy north of the border in Canada by acquiring leading sports media business theScore and using the brand for its sportsbook offering in Ontario.

“Barstool, combined with theScore’s reach and highly engaged user base, creates a massive digital footprint and ecosystem that will serve to propel Barstool Sportsbook and our uniquely integrated media and gaming business,” added Snowden.

Migration latest

Penn completed the transition to its in-house tech platform for theScore Bet in Canada in July.

US-facing Barstool Sportsbook is also set to migrate onto the operator’s in-house tech beginning Q3 2023. The offering is currently powered by Kambi.

Kambi will receive one-time fees of $12.5m for early termination and $15m for transition services as part of the agreement.

Despite the additional costs, Snowden said the sportsbook would benefit from the upcoming migration as it would “significantly enhance the overall product offering”.

Barstool founder Portnoy, who boasts nearly three million followers on Twitter, said: “Barstool Sports is bigger than ever and has become more than I ever dreamed of.”

Contribution positive

In the three years since Penn first invested in the company, Barstool Sports has grown its audience by 194% and recorded total podcast downloads of 1.6 billion.

Penn’s online casino gaming and sports betting (Interactive) division was contribution positive in Q4 2022, for the first time in company history, after delivering adjusted EBITDA of $5.2m.

Penn Entertainment’s digital gaming division posted a positive October, company officials said Thursday, another step toward the profitability targets in 2023.

Penn Interactive, which encompasses the company’s theScore and Barstool-branded online sportsbook and iCasino, was contribution positive last month, CEO Jay Snowden said during Thursday’s Q3 earnings call. This sets up the company to reach positive EBITDA sometime in 2023 – and potentially even the fourth quarter of 2022.

“Given our strong revenue growth and disciplined approach to marketing, we remain confident in our ability to deliver profitability in 2023,” Snowden said in a statement announcing Penn’s third-quarter earnings.

Snowden attributed the company’s success in part to the integration of its retail and online sportsbooks. Penn has centered its player acquisition strategies on converting Barstool Sports media consumers into bettors instead of the massive advertising and marketing campaigns of many of its larger competitors.

Snowden said the strong October also came with a fairly average sports betting hold percentage, which he said bolstered hopes for growth in the future.

The success of theScore Bet was also a major contributor, Snowden said. Ontario, the most populated North American jurisdiction with regulated online casino gaming as well as the most populated in which Penn operates online gaming, has become the company’s largest market. Penn acquired theScore media company, its sportsbook and its in-house tech stack platform last year.

Penn completed the transition to its in-house tech platform for theScore Bet in Ontario Oct. 19. It expects to complete the transition to its US-facing Barstool Sportsbook in the middle of 2023. Penn had previously announced the formal timeline for a split with Kambi, its current third-party tech provider, to take place next year.

Company officials have said the migration of in-house tech will allow increased betting options centered around its Barstool personalities. That includes enhanced prop and live betting options for single-game parlays, which typically have significantly higher hold percentages than individual bets.

Penn Entertainment CEO Jay Snowden: “Given our strong revenue growth and disciplined approach to marketing, we remain confident in our ability to deliver profitability in 2023.”

Though it has a fraction of the market share of most major operators, Penn is one of the first US sportsbook operators to report a single profitable month. Caesars reported positive October contributions from its digital gaming division as well.

FanDuel, the US market leader by gross gaming revenue, is the only operator to report a contribution positive quarter.

A positive fourth quarter 2022 for Penn could come down to the timing and promotional spending on mobile sports betting launches in Maryland, which is expected by year’s end, and Ohio, which will go live on Jan. 1, 2023. Both states have Penn Entertainment brick-and-mortar properties and are expected to be among the company’s most successful markets, Snowden said Thursday.

Like Caesars and several other operators, Penn’s Q4 profitability could come down to the World Series. Houston-area mattress firm owner Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale has a seven-figure bet on the Houston Astros with Barstool, which is a hedge for a promotional campaign.

Penn’s push toward profitability came after reporting ($49.3m) in adjusted EBITDA losses for Q3, its highest loss total of any quarter this year. The losses were in part driven by $12.5m in campaign contributions to an online sports betting ballot measure in California, as well as nearly $8m in additional payment processing taxes that were accounted for this quarter, according to the company’s earnings results.

The company previously reported losses of ($20.8m) in Q2 2022 and ($10m) in Q1 for its digital gaming division.

Overall, Penn blew by its consensus earnings per share estimate of around $0.38, reporting $0.72 EPS for the quarter, its best quarter in more than a year.

Penn Entertainment-owned sports media and betting brand theScore has named Jordan Schultz as its new NFL insider alongside the launch of its Get Into Bet Mode advertising campaign.

Schultz has agreed to a multi-year deal with theScore, producing written and multimedia content for the brand’s digital sports media platforms, with a focus on NFL and NBA coverage.

Schultz is an experienced reporter and on-camera personality, having worked for ESPN, Yahoo! Sports, Bleacher Report, NBC Sports and SiriusXM, across a variety of different platforms.

Under the agreement, he will contribute frequent reporting to theScore media app and be featured across the brand’s digital media footprint, including its Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and YouTube channels, as well as its podcasts. 

Schultz will also provide betting analysis and insights for the brand.

“We are thrilled to welcome Jordan to the team and to help build out our original NFL reporting as we incorporate his insider coverage and informed analysis across our multimedia channels,” said Aubrey Levy, senior VP of marketing and content for theScore. 

TheScore senior VP of marketing and content Aubrey Levy: “We are thrilled to welcome Jordan to the team and to help build out our original NFL reporting as we incorporate his insider coverage and informed analysis across our multimedia channels.”

“Jordan is a versatile talent who has strong NFL and NBA relationships and has built an impressive media footprint. With his proven news breaking and on-air video capabilities, he adds a brand new dimension to our in-app editorial and multimedia coverage. We’re excited to integrate him across our host of digital programming and collaborate on original content initiatives.”

Schultz added: “I’ve been a devoted theScore app user for years and I’ve always appreciated the authentic way in which they connect with and deliver content to fans. I’m thrilled to now be part of the organisation and help further enhance their NFL and NBA coverage. With the NFL season kicking off this week, it’s a perfect time to get started.”

Alongside the announcement, theScore has also revealed its latest advertising campaign, complete with the tagline “Get Into Bet Mode”.

The campaign consists of a series of 30-second ads featuring former Saturday Night Live cast member and comedy actor Jon Lovitz, Suits star Patrick J. Adams and world-famous Canadian comedian Russell Peters.

The ads focus on theScore’s Bet Mode function, which offers additional data, content, live odds and live bet tracking to users of theScore’s media app.

The function is a staple of theScore’s integrated media and betting experience and helps remove the friction between placing bets and enjoying sports, the firm said.

The ads help highlight theScore Bet’s newly enhanced sportsbook offering, which features 10x more betting options now than at its launch, an online casino product and integrations with theScore media app, the business added.

In addition to the full 30-second ads, the campaign will also feature six- and 15-second spots, as well as a series of social ads, radio, digital and out-of-home assets.

“We’re bringing back our Get Into Bet Mode campaign with new themes and new talent as we enter the action packed fall sports season,” commented Levy.

“This new campaign phase is tailored toward educating fans, many of whom re-engage in the fall, on key theScore Bet product enhancements and features. Specifically, we’ve significantly upgraded our product with increased sports betting options and have expanded our iCasino catalogue,” he concluded.

Jon Kaplowitz has announced his intention to stand down as head of Penn Interactive after leading the business for more than three years. 

Announcing his intention to move on from the Penn National Gaming subsidiary in a post on LinkedIn, Kaplowitz celebrated his achievements in the position and explained that he is leaving to spend more time with his family, ahead of the birth of his second child.

“Building and leading PI has been the singular best experience in my professional career, and it was made even better by working with an incredible team and partners,” he said. 

“From day one, our collective goal was to become the best and most innovative integrated sports media and gaming company in the US.

“We did that and have accomplished so much more, from growing the division’s top line 12x in less than three years, having a top-rated app in the US, and being ranked one of the top workplaces in Philly and in the industry. 

Outgoing head of Penn Interactive Jon Kaplowitz: “Building and leading PI has been the singular best experience in my professional career, and it was made even better by working with an incredible team and partners.”

“I am most proud of the strong culture that is in our DNA, one of collaboration, transparency, and building our leaders from within.”

Penn National Gaming has not yet responded to an iGaming NEXT request for comment. It is not clear who will take over when Kaplowitz departs.

Results released earlier this year showed that Penn Interactive – which operates the Barstool Sportsbook brand in the US and theScore Bet brand in Canada – tripled its revenue year-on-year in Q4 2021 to $157.6m.

Penn National Gaming said in May that the Penn Interactive digital subsidiary was on track to generate an EBITDA loss of $50m in 2022 before hitting breakeven in Q4 of 2022 and turning profitable in 2023.

More to follow…

The SEC has charged an ex-Penn Interactive employee with alleged insider trading relating to Penn National Gaming’s $2bn acquisition of theScore.

David Roda, a former software engineer at PNG digital subsidiary Penn Interactive Ventures, allegedly took advantage of confidential information before purchasing 500 out-of-money call options on Score Media in the period leading up to the acquisition.

He also tipped off his friend, an individual named Andrew Larkin, who is thought to have purchased a further 375 shares in Score Media.

According to the SEC’s complaint, Score Media’s stock price shot up nearly 80% after Penn’s acquisition was announced to the public.

Roda and Larkin then sold their individual holdings for unlawful profits of $560,762 and $5,602, respectively.

Co-acting regional director of the SEC’s Philadelphia Regional Office, Scott A. Thompson: “The SEC remains committed to finding, investigating, and charging those who engage in insider trading.” 

“As we allege in our complaint, Roda was entrusted by his employer with critical, market-moving information, and he betrayed that trust by using the information to trade and also tip his friend so they could both profit,” said Scott A. Thompson, co-acting regional director of the SEC’s Philadelphia Regional Office.

“When employees like Roda misappropriate and trade on confidential information, it erodes market confidence. The SEC remains committed to finding, investigating, and charging those who engage in insider trading,” he added.

The SEC has charged Philadelphia residents Roda and Larkin with violating the antifraud provisions of the securities laws in the US.

Roda has agreed to be permanently enjoined from violating those provisions and has agreed to pay disgorgement, prejudgment interest, and a civil penalty to be determined by the court at a later date.

In a parallel action, the US Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania announced criminal charges against Roda on 13 June.

Larkin, meanwhile, has agreed to be permanently enjoined from violating the antifraud provisions of the securities laws and will pay more than $11,000 in disgorgement and penalties.

The settlements are still subject to court approval.

Penn Interactive is on track to generate an EBITDA loss of $50m in 2022, with a breakeven point expected in Q4 before a turn to profitability in 2023, according to the operator’s Q1 2022 results.

The Penn National Gaming subsidiary, which owns and operates the Barstool Sportsbook app and theScore Bet, generated an adjusted EBITDA loss of $10.0m during Q1, alongside $141.5m in revenue. 

This level of revenue represents a marked improvement from Q1 2021, during which the segment generated $86.3m – however it did make a positive EBITDA contribution of $1.3m during that quarter.

Penn Interactive benefitted from new market launches during and following the end of the quarter, with the Barstool Sportsbook launching in Louisiana in January and theScore Bet going live in Ontario on 4 April.

Penn said these markets, and particularly Ontario, have demonstrated the value of cross-sell opportunities and brand recognition among patrons of the operator’s digital brands. 

“While still early, theScore Bet’s performance thus far in Ontario has exceeded our expectations, due in large part to theScore’s incredible brand recognition and media footprint as well as the support from Barstool Sports and the popular team from Spittin Chiclets, the number one hockey podcast in Canada,” Penn National Gaming CEO Jay Snowden told analysts.

“Since launch, theScore Bet ranked as Canada’s number one most downloaded sports betting app and the number one rated betting app in the iOS Store.

“Early results reflect strong cross sell opportunities,” Snowden added. “Currently 79% of all bettors [using theScore Bet] in Ontario are theScore Media app users and 50% of theScore’s sportsbook users have wagered on the iCasino products.”

Penn intends to continue capitalising on the cross-sell and cost-saving opportunities between its owned brands. Future plans include a transition for theScore Bet onto theScore’s proprietary risk and trading platform during Q3, which Snowden said will allow the business to significantly bolster the product’s features and capabilities, including expanded betting markets and parlay options.

Penn National Gaming CEO Jay Snowden: “Since launch, theScore Bet ranked as Canada’s number one most downloaded sports betting app and the number one rated betting app in the iOS Store.”

Penn said it was also on track to transition the Barstool Sportsbook app to theScore’s PAM and trading platform in Q3 2023, which should provide meaningful cost and revenue synergy opportunities. 

In addition, the Barstool Sportsbook app will be fully integrated into theScore Media app during the second half of 2022, which Penn said is the best way to maximise the value of both brands in the US.

Snowden once again saluted Penn Interactive’s relatively low customer acquisition costs, stating: “The Barstool Sportsbook app has gained market share in the three states that report NGR by operator despite our spending a fraction of what our competitors do on promo and paid media.”

Indeed, in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Arizona combined, Barstool Sportsbook has reached market share of 10.7%, despite spending a lower percentage of handle in promotional costs than other operators in those markets.

Sports betting promotional costs for Barstool were equal to 2.1%, 1.5% and 2.6% of handle in each of the states respectively, while other operators spent 3.3%, 4.5% and 4.2% of handle on promos in those markets, according to the company’s data points. 

Looking to the business as a whole, Penn National Gaming brought in total revenue of $1.56bn in Q1 2022, up 22.7% year-on-year.

Penn National Gaming CFO Felicia Hendrix: “We continue to see a dislocation between where we value our shares and where they are currently trading and we expect to allocate capital accordingly if this dislocation persists.”

Adjusted EBITDAR from that revenue came to $494.7m, representing an increase of 10.7% over the prior corresponding period. Net income, however, was down against the prior year at $51.6m on a net income margin of 3.3%, compared to $90.9m at a margin of 7.1% last year. 

Based on its Q1 2022 results, Penn has increased its previously announced revenue guidance to between $6.15bn and $6.55bn. EBITDAR is now expected to fall between $1.88bn and $2bn for the full year 2022.

The business ended the period with $1.81bn in cash and cash equivalents and net debt of $923.5m.

CFO Felicia Hendrix said: “Our balance sheet gives us the flexibility to be opportunistic in a dynamic marketplace and to return capital to shareholders. We continue to see a dislocation between where we value our shares and where they are currently trading, and we expect to allocate capital accordingly if this dislocation persists.”

Indeed, Penn has been active under its existing share repurchase authorisation during Q1, buying back 3.8 million shares of its common stock for a total of $175.1m. This leaves the business with $574.9m remaining under its $750m authorisation.

DraftKings does not expect to match its US market share total in Canada due to the country’s booming grey gambling market.

The operator is hoping to go live in Ontario when the province launches regulated online sports betting and iGaming on 4 April 2022.

Ontario represents around 40% of Canada’s total population and would be the fifth largest US state by population.

This has allowed US-focused operators including DraftKings to categorise the province operationally as if it were another US state on the North American expansion roadmap.

“Canada is a very similar country in many ways to us, although there are differences as well,” said Robins to investors last week. “But being our largest trade partner, very close in proximity and very similar culturally, we expect it to be a similar type of market.

“As of right now, we haven’t accounted for any differences. Once we get some real data we will adjust up or down appropriately,” he added. “But right now, we don’t have any real data or evidence to suggest that we should be accounting for Canada differently than any of the US states.”

But there is one major difference in that Canada is already rife with competition and not all competitors will be starting from scratch like DraftKings.

BetMGM part-owner Entain – one of DraftKings’ major US rivals – is a good example of this. The FTSE 100 operator has been operating in Canada’s grey online gambling market for many years with its Party Gaming and bwin brands and has recently added a localised element with the C$300m acquisition of Avid Gaming in February.

While some high-profile examples of market liberalisation have seen regulators punish firms for previously operating in an unregulated environment (such as in the Netherlands), Ontario is intending to reward those firms with licences as their operations shift from grey to white.

This means current incumbents will not be at a disadvantage, while the likes of DraftKings will be on the back foot as they launch online sports betting and iGaming operations in the country for the first time. DraftKings does have a strong DFS database to lean on, however.

Robins was keen to point this out to DraftKings investors last week. He said: “Ontario has indicated its intent is to licence those who’ve been operating in the grey so I expect it to be a pretty competitive market from the get-go.

“Some of those are the very same people we’re competing with in the US, with the difference being that when a US state launches, everybody is kind of starting from the same place,” he added.

PointsBet, Rivalry, theScore and 888 have already received a licence to launch in Ontario, while the likes of FanDuel and BetMGM are expected to apply alongside DraftKings.

DraftKings said it occupied US market share of 30% for online sports betting and 19% for iGaming in Q4 2021 but has been more conservative in its estimates for Canada, guiding to overall market share of between 10%-20% at maturity, compared to 20%-30% for the US. This means DraftKings expects to match 66% of its US market share total in Canada in a best-case scenario.

“We have projected 50% of the market share on the low end and about two thirds of the market share on the high end that we are getting in the US,” said Robins.

“While we feel we will have a very competitive product and a really strong brand and database due to our DFS presence in Ontario, the fact of the matter is that sportsbook is not a new product and iGaming is not a new product in the market and the very same operators that have been doing it will be able to continue doing it as far as we see.

“We’re being a little bit more cautious about what kind of market share we can project taking. Hopefully, there is some upside there, but we won’t know until we get in,” he added.

DraftKings this month increased its TAM forecast for the whole of North America to $80bn at maturity, driven in part by a $1bn increase from Canada compared to prior estimates.

Regulus Partners analyst Paul Leyland said: “The big medium-term driver of scale is likely to be whether other markets of sufficient latent size legislate in a way to drive operating leverage.

“Ontario is a clear positive, but it will be interesting to see how DraftKings fares in a less US-centric market where global operators such as bet365 and Super Group have a very strong existing presence,” he added.

TheScore Bet has become one of the first brands to be registered as an online gambling operator by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO).

The brand is the sports betting arm of Canadian media brand theScore Media, which was acquired by US operator Penn National Gaming in October of last year for $2bn.

Subject to regulatory requirements and the execution of an operating agreement with the AGCO’s online subsidiary, iGaming Ontario, the operator plans to go live on 4 April, the first official day of Ontario’s market launch.

Australia-based PointsBet looks set to join theScore as one of Ontario’s first live operators. It was also approved today (4 February) as a licensed sportsbook in the province. Toronto-based Rivalry has also been cleared for launch. 

The AGCO announced earlier this week that Ontario’s online sports betting and iGaming market would launch in April, with rigorous standards of integrity, fairness, player protection and social responsibility required from licensed operators.

Since single-event sports betting was legalised in Canada last year, only the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation’s Proline+ website has been permitted to offer the product to online customers in the province.

Should theScore receive the required regulatory approvals before 4 April, it will be one of the first operators to go live. It is widely considered to be the most recognised sports media brand in Canada. 

“We’re thrilled to be one of the first operators to receive an internet gaming operator certificate of registration from the AGCO as we prepare for Ontario’s new regulated market,” said John Levy, CEO of theScore. 

“We’ve been, and will continue to be, at the forefront as regulated internet gaming is introduced in Ontario and are beyond excited to be able to bring theScore Bet to our home market on 4 April. Finally, the countdown to launch has begun,” he added. 

TheScore Bet was the first prospective operator in Ontario to receive its platform compliance certification from Gaming Labs International, as well as its RG Check iGaming accreditation from Canada’s Responsible Gambling Council.

Penn National Gaming released its 2021 full-year financial report yesterday (3 February), in which the benefits of its Q4 acquisition of theScore were made clear.

It is the number one app for sports content in Ohio, the report said.

Crucially, Penn intends to integrate its Barstool Sportsbook app into theScore’s media app in the second half of 2022 in order to allow for cross-selling and promotion between the two brands. 

It also plans to migrate theScore Bet onto its own proprietary trading platform in Q3 2021, with the Barstool Sportsbook brand following suit in Q3 2023.

“Following this migration, we will begin to realise the immense benefits of a wholly owned and integrated technology stack as we roll off our current third-party platforms, in addition to capital expense reductions as our technology spending rationalises post-migration,” said Penn president and CEO Jay Snowden.

TheScore is currently building a proprietary trading platform and player account management system (PAM) from scratch.

The report said theScore generated record revenue in Q4, 32% ahead of the same period in 2020. 

Overall, theScore grew media revenue 76% annually for the full year 2021. In addition, the brand experienced continued user growth and engagement, with average monthly active users on the media app increasing by 7% year-on-year.