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Instead of waiting to sports media to come to it, FanDuel Group will become the sports media.
FanDuel Group announced Wednesday morning the creation of The Duel, a content delivery platform focused on daily fantasy sports and sports betting. FanDuel Group will partner with Minute Media, a rising tech company in the sports media sector, to operate the platform.
It’s the first serious foray into content creation for FanDuel, which has lagged behind DraftKings on this front. Its competitor has long served up content via Playbook.
Content on The Duel on its launch day appears to be a mix of sports betting, fantasy, and sports entertainment. The top headline is “Pro Gambler Makes Insane Parlay Bet on Week 1 College Football”, followed by injury news on Reds first baseman Joey Votto and a story about the total in the upcoming Alabama–Louisville game.
As of Wednesday morning, however, the site appeared to be down with no explanation from the company as to why.
As you might expect, the site also features prominent navigation to FanDuel’s contest lobby.
Understanding The Duel’s approach requires looking into how Minute Media’s sites function. The company offers fan publishing much like Bleacher Report and Fansided, allowing hordes of amateur writers to generate content. A percentage of that content makes it to publication after review, and writers often are compensated based upon clicks.
The Duel will mix that fan-centered approach with what it calls “expert-led video and audio programming for the growing segment of fantasy sports and betting fanatics.”
“FanDuel is founded on the idea of bringing fans closer to the sports they love, and now, together with Minute Media, we’re letting fans into the press box,” said Matt King, CEO, FanDuel Group in a statement. “We want to give fans a designated platform for all sports and fantasy content, and The Duel is part of our broader efforts to do so.”
FanDuel experts JJ Zachariason, Jim Sannes and Brandon Gdula will have a home on the site as well.
FanDuel will be using the studios of the FNTSY Sports Network and FNTSY’s expertise for the company-created video segments.
That includes the FanDuel Hurry Up, which will air from 2-3 p.m. from FNTSY’s studio Monday through Friday.
Here are some pictures of the FanDuel studio courtesy of the network:
FNTSY is a part of a larger company called SportsGrid, which has deals in place with the NBA and ESPN as well and owns fantasy websites like Daily Roto.
FanDuel’s acquisition earlier this year by Paddy Power Betfair preceded the creation of FanDuel Group. That new company handles the American sports betting operation for PPB, which operates as FanDuel Sportsbook.
FanDuel Sportsbook runs the sports betting shop at Meadowlands Racetrack in New Jersey and attracted some unwanted attention for kinks in its early days. More recently, FanDuel Group announced a nationwide partnership with Boyd Gaming that will allow market access in 15 states.
In its own words …
“Minute Media’s products enable fans to create, publish, share, and distribute sports content around the world. This unique approach to covering sports fuses topical sports stories with everyday pop culture, creating a fresh new voice in the world of sports media.”
Sites under the company’s umbrella include 90min, 12up, and DBLTAP. The tech company is already into a Series F funding round that generated $17 million. This round brings its total raised to $77 million.
Backers include Battery Ventures, Dawn Capital, Gemini Ventures, North Base Media, ProSieben, Qumra Capital, Goldman Sachs, La Maison, Vintage Investments, and Remagine Ventures.
“With the recent changes to the US sports betting market, there is no better time to be making this strategic move,” said Rich Routman, President, Minute Media in a statement. “The fantasy and sports betting industries have been on the rise for quite some time, and the opportunity to shake things up by leveraging authentic fan voices, is an opportunity that Minute Media and FanDuel are collectively excited about.”