NBA Inks Global DFS Deal
The National Basketball Association is teaming up with UK fantasy sports operator PlayON to offer an array of DFS experiences to players in Europe, Latin America and Australasia.
As the NBA’s new official DFS provider for those regions, PlayON will begin offering fantasy contests during the upcoming playoffs. These will be available initially in Germany, the UK, Italy, France and Spain in Europe; in Brazil, Mexico and Argentina in Latin America; and in Australia, Japan and the Philippines.
The contests will be tailored to local languages, aesthetics and preferences in each particular market, the company said.
“With basketball’s global appeal, we are always looking for new ways to bring authentic NBA experiences to our fans across the world,” said Salvatore LaRocca, the league’s president of Global Partnerships.
The deal allows the NBA to capitalize on its growing global popularity in markets where the regulatory environment is more clear-cut than in the U.S., whose state-by-state approach leaves questions about whether daily fantasy sports is gambling unanswered in many jurisdictions.
PlayON, based in London, has registered customers in more than 100 countries since launching in 2012 and offers DFS contests in football, basketball, golf, cricket, rugby and Australian rules football. It is also the official fantasy partner of the European Tour and the Caribbean Premier League.
The company accepts real-money play only in the UK, Ireland and Australia, where it is licensed to do so.
“Our approach to regulation is resonating well with sporting organizations. We are only going to operate where the regulatory framework is well established and very clear,” said founder and CEO Killian Jones. “There is no question or ambiguity around regulation or licensing, which puts people at ease.”