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“Sports fans in Europe are embracing the game inside the game through DraftKings’ contests and content,” DraftKings CEO Jason Robins said in an announcement of the expansion. “As we looked to expand our European footprint, it was an easy choice to launch in Ireland and Austria, given their renowned passion for sports.”
The addition of the two new countries will likely not result in a massive uptick in users immediately. The two countries have more than 13 million in combined population; they are also not markets that are particularly familiar with the DFS product.
Still, it represents a further expansion of DraftKings as it attempts to widen its reach. DraftKings entered both countries thanks to the Controlled Skill Game License it received from the Malta Gaming Authority.
DraftKings noted the affinity for sports in both countries, particularly golf and mixed martial arts in Ireland and American football in Austria. All ten sports that DraftKings offers will be available in both countries.
At the same time as the launch in the new countries, DraftKings is offering a promotion where users can win tickets to this week’s Liverpool vs. Manchester United match.
The move into two new countries brings the number of countries served by DraftKings to seven. The others:
DraftKings does not serve all of the US, as the product is either considered illegal or resides in a gray area in some states.
DraftKings also noted that it “intends to continue expanding its geographic footprint” next year. Other European countries are likely on the agenda for the DFS operator.
But DraftKings offered this assessment of its growth in the two countries:
In the UK, September 2017 saw 51% year-over-year growth in entry fees and 31% year-over-year growth in new customers. In Germany, September saw 46% growth in registered customers, the largest monthly growth to-date.
Of course, if the comparison point for those percentages is quite small, those aren’t figures that move the needle.
Still, DraftKings is trying to add or serve markets that No. 2 operator FanDuel does not.
FanDuel left the UK earlier this year and doesn’t serve any of Europe currently. FanDuel also doesn’t offer paid-entry contests in Texas for legal reasons, a decision that gives DraftKings a decided edge in the American market. DraftKings has been handily outpacing FanDuel in terms of both handle and revenue early in the NFL season.