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Fantasy sport platform scores group endorsement

Fantasy sport platform scores group endorsement

Entertainment backers have moved to acquire equity and help develop the monetised fantasy sport realm Draftstars.

Firms: MinterEllison (CrownBet); Herbert Smith Freehills (Seven West Media); Allens (Fox Sports)

Deal:  Crownbet, Fox Sports and Seven West Media have become joint equity shareholders in the Draftstars business.

Value: $20 million

Area: M&A

Key players: The MinterEllison team advising CrownBet on the deal was led by partner Nick Broome. Senior associate Anna Schwartz assisted.

Deal significance:

Entertainment backers in the media and gambling industries have entered a joint venture as major shareholders in a fantasy sports realm launched last year.

Draftstars allows players to form their own fantasy teams and play daily for cash prizes. It presently hosts fantasy sporting contests across the AFL, NRL, NFL and NBA, with plans to add cricket and the EPL to its fantasy line-up.  

CrownBet, Seven West Media (Seven) and Fox Sports Australia are now joint shareholders of Draftstars. The latest development in the deal was Seven coming to the table with a 33 per cent shareholding in the start-up.

In addition to $20 million for 33 per cent of the Draftstars business, the entertainment group has agreed to provide media support and contribute to product and brand development.

Managing director and CEO of Seven Tim Worner described the company’s investment in Draftstars as part of a “strategy of leveraging the power of media assets to scale early-stage businesses”.

“Draftstars is an exciting investment for our company and we look forward to working with them and our investment partners in driving brand awareness and engagement,” Mr Worner said.

MinterEllison, which advised CrownBet, said the deal involved the management of competing shareholder interests and negotiation of transactional terms.

“MinterEllison is proud to have acted for our longstanding client CrownBet in this strategically important investment by Seven West Media, an investment that will continue to promote the growth of the Draftstars business and brand,” lead partner Nick Broome said.

 
Pictured: MinterEllison partner Nick Broome and senior associate Anna Schwartz.

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