Tipico US To Wind Down Operations After MGM Acquisition

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The search by MGM Resorts for a proprietary sports betting platform to use internationally is over as the company announced it is acquiring Tipico US from the Tipico Group.

The acquisition is technically made by its LeoVegas subsidiary. This deal does not change anything involving BetMGM in the US or other markets exclusive to the joint venture where 50/50 partner Entain provides the betting tech.

Instead, the technology will be used for a “purpose-built proprietary sportsbook across all international markets and brands,” according to the release. The deal, which will allow LeoVegas to end its agreement with Kambi for its international sportsbooks, should close in the third quarter.

Financial terms were not disclosed. MGM was up slightly in pre-market trading Monday morning.

What MGM is saying

Monday’s release ends the search for sportsbook tech that CEO Bill Hornbuckle has discussed looking for in earnings calls. He noted at an investor forum in March that the company was close to an acquisition.

“This acquisition gives us control of our entire technology ecosystem, and we are delighted to bring Tipico’s U.S. team, with their track record of developing high quality product and pricing capabilities, into our business,” MGM International Interactive President Gary Fritz said.

The deal could assist in both sports betting and iGaming.

“By controlling our own sportsbook technology, we ensure that we will deliver the world’s greatest iGaming experience to customers across all our markets and brands,” added LeoVegas CEO Gustaf Hagman.

Changes coming for Tipico

Tipico will shut down its US operations in the next few months. The brand is live in four markets:

Along with the technology, MGM is acquiring “certain of Tipico’s U.S. facing management, technology and trading teams across the U.S., Colombia and Europe.”

Another brand bounced from US

Tipico is the latest brand to exit after failing to establish significant US market share.

The German sports betting leader announced its US plans in July 2020. Tipico said it would launch in New Jersey with its own platform.

US CEO Adrian Vella told LSR in January 2023 that it was ready to speed up its progress. Tipico tried to appeal to locals through partnerships with live music venues and even a Cincinnati brewery.

“We’re taking a cautious approach but aggressive approach, investing heavily in the product, VIP and the customer, we really want to have something where the customer, they have no reason to churn,” Vella said at the time.

MGM started overseas push in 2022

The first step in MGM’s international plans started in 2022 with the LeoVegas purchase. The two eventually launched in the UK under the BetMGM name in August 2023.

The brand used Chris Rock in its ads to announce the launch. That led to some controversy, though, given his acting in animated children’s movies.

The UK’s advertising watchdog, however, decided the ad did not directly appeal to children.

Photo by Shutterstock/Jonathan Weiss