Sports Remains Fanatics Focus, But Online Casinos ‘Definitely’ Part Of Long-Term Strategy

Written By Grant Lucas on September 21, 2023 - Last Updated on October 3, 2023
executive placing dart for fanatics, which targets 2023 or early 2024 to launch online casinos

Its name alone lets you know of its priorities: Fanatics Betting and Gaming. Betting comes first.

But don’t believe that it ends there for Fanatics, which entered New Jersey via the PointsBet sportsbook a few weeks ago. The company fully intends join the ranks of available NJ online casinos. And soon. Potentially by the end of the year, according to Ari Borod, Fanatics’ chief business officer.

According to Borod, online casino gaming “will definitely be part of our long-term strategy, just like it is for FanDuel and DraftKings, and obviously for the land-based casino businesses like BetMGM, Caesars and PENN.”

Fanatics NJ online casino coming in 2023?

While the Fanatics website further supports the company’s emphasis on sports betting – “Fanatics Betting and Gaming is the online and retail sports betting and online gaming business of Fanatics” – Borod made it clear while appearing on a podcast: That is not exactly the case.

In fact, while sports betting will remain a primary focus, Fanatics is targeting an online casino launch by the end of 2023. Although, that timeline could be pushed to early 2024 “if we don’t feel it’s perfect yet.”

“If there are people who want to play online blackjack on their phone, we don’t want them going to a competitor to do it because we want them to continue engaging with Fanatics,” Borod said recently on the “Gamble On” podcast. “So we’re obviously going to have to have that, to give the customer what they want. It’s definitely part of the strategy.”

Borod noted that “Fanatics is really a sports business, and so first and foremost, that is what we’re going out with.

“We want to make sure this is another thing we can add to the Fanatics ecosystem of product. But longer term, as a gaming company, iCasino obviously is a very good business.”


NJ online casino gaming is where the revenue is at

Fanatics Betting and Gaming closed on its acquisition of PointsBet USA in August, providing Fanatics with PointsBet’s US operations in eight states, including New Jersey. This allowed the company to roll out PointsBet, a Fanatics Experience a few weeks ago.

Between the two brands, Fanatics now operates in 11 states for legal sports betting and four states for online casino gaming.

But it’s the latter where the money is at.

Consider that in New Jersey, online sports betting has generated $2.7 billion in revenue since going live in August 2018. During that same timeframe, however, NJ has produced $5.7 billion in online casino revenue – more than twice the sports betting vertical.

Appearing on “Squawk on the Street” on MSNBC, Matt King, CEO of Fanatics Betting and Gaming, shared his belief that Fanatics will “reach profitability faster than anyone else in the industry” thanks to its customer database and brand recognition. Obviously getting into online casino gaming will help Fanatics toward that goal.

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Grant Lucas

Grant Lucas is a longtime sportswriter who has covered high school, collegiate, and professional levels. A graduate of Linfield College in McMinnville, Grant now focuses his attention on the growing NJ online gambling and sports betting scene.

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