A pair of the largest daily fantasy sports sites — Fantasy Feud and Fantasy Aces — either are or are on track to becoming part of publicly traded corporations.
Both announcements came within a day of each other, although the Fantasy Feud deal had been known for months because of a series of earlier press releases. Fantasy Feud’s deal was completed this week; Fantasy Aces’ was just announced and is pending action later this year.
The Fantasy Feud deal
Fantasy Feud left its private roots behind on Tuesday, with a press release announcing the completion of a transaction creating a new corporation called Gaming Nation.
From the release:
Gaming Nation Inc. (formerly Oceanside Capital Corp. TSXV: OCC) (the “Company” or “Gaming Nation”) (TSXV: FAN) is pleased to announce that it has completed its previously announced reverse takeover transaction with Gaming Nation Acquisition Corp. (“GNAC”) and has today purchased, directly and indirectly, all of the shares of 5050 Central Ltd. and its subsidiary 5050 Central-Delaware Inc., Fantasy Feud Inc., Guru Fantasy Reports, Inc. and Stevo Design, Inc. Subject to the receipt from the TSXV of its final bulletin in respect of the transaction, it is anticipated that trading of Gaming Nation’s post-consolidated common shares will begin trading as a Tier 1 issuer on the TSX Venture Exchange (“TSXV”) under stock symbol “FAN” on June 15.
Fantasy Feud is the only DFS contest operator that is a part of the transaction. The other companies are:
- 5050 Central, which runs electronic raffle systems.
- Guru Fantasy Reports, Inc., which owns FantasyGuru.com, a fantasy information site.
- Stevo Design, Inc., which owns Pick Nation, a handicapping site.
The first details of the business combination came out earlier this year (followed by press releases in April and earlier this month).
Interestingly, Canaccord Genuity brokered the deal; they also were involved with the Amaya Gaming reverse takeover of PokerStars.
The Fantasy Aces deal
The Fantasy Aces deal was made public on Monday. The deal would combine FA and another DFS site, DraftTeam. The California-based Fantasy Aces would also be traded on the Canadian-based TSX Venture Exchange, should the deal go through.
From the press release:
Fantasy Aces, LLC (“Fantasy Aces“), a California limited liability company and DraftTeam Daily Fantasy Sports Corp. (the “Corporation” or “DraftTeam“) (TSX VENTURE:DTS) are pleased to announce that they have entered into a definitive agreement (the “Business Combination Agreement“) on June 8, 2015. The resulting business combination (the “Transaction“) will combine their assets into a newly formed partnership,, when completed, which will be considered a “Reverse Takeover” for the purposes of the TSX Venture Exchange (the “TSXV“).
Upon completion of the Transaction the resulting issuer will be renamed Fantasy Aces Daily Fantasy Sports Corp. (“FA”), and Fantasy Aces executives and employees will serve as the sole operators of the new entity, including all day-to-day site operations.
The deal is not complete, yet. According to the release, the deal will not be finished until later this summer:
DraftTeam will hold a meeting of its shareholders on or prior to August 1, 2015 to permit shareholders to vote on the Transaction. The board of directors of DraftTeam unanimously supports the Transaction, has determined that the Transaction is in the best interest of DraftTeam and recommends that the shareholders of DraftTeam vote in favour of the Transaction.
What’s it all mean?
Two DFS sites going public will clearly have ramifications for the industry:
- Going public will mean an infusion of cash heading into NFL season for both sites. It also gives both sites a stronger foothold as the entry into the DFS market of Yahoo and Amaya/PokerStars looms. The Fantasy Aces deal includes a $500,000 loan from DraftTeam until the transaction is complete. The IPO for Fantasy Feud’s parent company will likely mean a much larger financial impact on that site.
- Clearly, if they weren’t already, Fantasy Feud and Fantasy Aces are now both positioned to take over as No. 3 in the DFS market, behind DraftKings and FanDuel. (Legal Sports Report took a look at some of the contenders for No. 3 earlier this year, and profiled Fantasy Aces, as well.)
- We’ll likely know more about how these companies are doing financially. Generally, privately held DFS sites don’t give out financials, unless they want to (like FanDuel did, up until recently). But publicly traded companies obviously have to be more transparent. We already got a glimpse of that from Fantasy Aces, which released numbers for its user base, contest payouts, net income and revenue, among other metrics.
In addition to the FA and FF moves, there has also been increasing speculation of a possible IPO for FanDuel. And a formal announcement of a huge investment from publicly traded Walt Disney Co. is expected this week.
Most of the contest operators in the DFS space had remained private, until now. But that trend is obviously coming to an end with all of these pending deals involving DFS operators.