Offer ends today: Save 50%—more than $175—on a subscription during our 9th Anniversary celebrationAct Now

Erika Nardini, CEO of Barstool Sports; Simon Denyer, CEO of DAZN; Alex Mather, CEO of The Athletic. Photos by Bloomberg and The Information.

Why 2020 Could Bring a Merger Wave to Online Sports

By and  |  Jan. 6, 2020 10:30 AM PST
Photo: Erika Nardini, CEO of Barstool Sports; Simon Denyer, CEO of DAZN; Alex Mather, CEO of The Athletic. Photos by Bloomberg and The Information.

This year is shaping up to be a big year for digital sports media companies such as The Athletic, Barstool Sports and Action Network. New business opportunities are emerging from the growth of legalized sports betting. The Athletic is expanding into the U.K. Several others, including Overtime and FuboTV, are raising money. Last month, daily fantasy sports site DraftKings announced plans to go public. 

Meanwhile, the big sports media channels like ESPN have lost some of their dominance as the online upstarts grab more attention, particularly among younger audiences. All that adds up to the potential for some of the newer firms to get acquired. There are already signs that Barstool Sports’ owner, The Chernin Group, is interested in selling the firm, say people familiar with the situation. Both FuboTV and Overtime could be candidates for sale as well, we hear.

Get access to exclusive coverage
Read deeply reported stories from the largest newsroom in tech.
Latest Articles
 
startups crypto
The DeFi Conundrum: Why Crypto Exchanges Like Uniswap Are Struggling to Reach Critical Mass
Art by Mike Sullivan.
In theory, the implosion of FTX should be the biggest catalyst yet for the adoption of decentralized finance. In practice, it’s not so simple. Even Uniswap, the world’s largest decentralized exchange, still has a lot of work to do to get big traders to use its service. The crypto startup, which raised $165 million in October at a nearly $1.7 billion valuation, plans to spend that...
Latest Briefs
 
Plaid Cuts 20% of Staff After Growth Falls Short
U.S. National Security Deal on TikTok Held Up on Security Concerns
Pinterest Adds Elliott Management Executive to its Board
Stay in the know
Receive a summary of the day's top tech news—distilled into one email.
Access on the go
View stories on our mobile app and tune into our weekly podcast.
Join live video Q&A’s
Deep-dive into topics like startups and autonomous vehicles with our top reporters and other executives.
Enjoy a clutter-free experience
Read without any banner ads.
startups venture capital
Six Investors Chasing Debt Deals During the Downturn
With equity investors dialing back and public markets frozen over, startups that need to raise money are short of options.
The 1:1 policy
A Billionaire Couple Goes for Broke: How John and Laura Arnold Plan to Give It All Away
On Election Day, John and Laura Arnold found themselves deep in the lion’s den: a few blocks from the White House, working from the new Washington D.C.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. Photo by Bloomberg
Exclusive microsoft
Microsoft Eyes ‘Super App’ to Break Apple and Google’s Hold on Mobile Search
Microsoft recently considered building a “super app” that could combine shopping, messaging, web search, news feeds and other services in a one-stop smartphone app, in what would be an ambitious move by the software giant to expand further into consumer services, according to people with direct knowledge of the discussions.
Illustration by Josh Brill.
Opinion economy
A Raise May Be Out of the Question, but You Do Have Other Options
Layoffs have swept through the tech industry (and more may be on the horizon ), flooding the job market with qualified candidates—just like you—as even the large companies are fighting to stay afloat.
Animation by Clark Miller
The Big Read
The Passion of Cathie Wood: Why the ‘Wackiest Portfolio Manager on Earth’ Isn’t Losing Faith
Cathie Wood was sitting in a phone booth in the New York office of Ark Invest when she heard Tasha Keeney, one of the firm’s analysts, let out a scream—“a happy scream,” Wood recalled.
Photo by Bloomberg.
Exclusive
Marc Lore’s Kitchen on Wheels Startup Cuts Staff, Dials Back Delivery Ambitions
Wonder, a mobile kitchen and food-delivery startup led by Jet.com founder Marc Lore, has laid off 7% of its workforce, a company spokesperson said, as it attempts to overhaul its business.