The Week In Daily Fantasy Sports: July 25-31, 2015
Legal Sports Report

This Week In Daily: July 31, 2015

DraftKings
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“This Week In Daily” is LegalSportsReport’s weekly wrap of key facts, happenings and miscellany from the daily fantasy sports industry.

Stories of note

DraftKings gets a lot of money

Just two weeks after FanDuel secured its next round of funding ($275 million), DraftKings followed suit, closing its own round to the tune of $300 million.

The biggest investor in the deal was Fox Sports, who reportedly invested $150 million for 11 percent of the company. Also included in the deal is $250 million in ad spend by DraftKings at Fox Sports properties, although the deal is not an exclusive one like ESPN has with DraftKings.

As a side note, DraftKings also has $50 million in “mystery” investments that were not publicly known previously; we took a look at that issue here.

Problems with payments

It wasn’t a good week for payment issues in the industry.

First, Robert DellaFave took a look at identify verification and financial checks at Yahoo’s platform, and found them to be lagging behind the rest of the DFS industry. In fact, he believed their process was more like offshore gambling sites employ than anything else.

Then, we took a look at the sites having issues with paying players, including FantasyUp and Ballr. The former has said in the RotoGrinders forums that players would be paid “by the end of the week,” so we’ll watching for anecdotal reports here. The latter, whose website had been a dead link, now features text saying player balances are intact.

Even if and when the sites pay players, it’s not a good look for the industry, brings up legal questions, and invites regulation for the DFS space.

Of the week

Read of the week

“Op-Ed: Is Daily Fantasy Sports Gambling? Of Course It Is”

Jeff Hwang rolls out an argument that likely a lot of people in the DFS industry believe, even if they won’t admit to it publicly: DFS is both a game of skill and gambling, at the same time. The two things aren’t mutually exclusive, he points out:

Hwang isn’t giving a legal briefing, just a look at the core of what DFS is. Of course, some of the DFS industry might also have legal problems to contend with, soon, as well; see the legal analysis currently going on in Nevada.

Watches of the week

DraftKings CEO Jason Robins and Eilers Research’s Adam Krejcik (19-minute mark) talk DFS on CNBC:

Tweets of the week

Number of the week

$860 million

The total of known investment funding in DFS operators. A little more than two weeks ago, that figure stood at about $230 million.

In case you missed it

Other news and stories from the world of DFS:

Dustin Gouker
- Dustin Gouker has been a sports journalist for more than 15 years, working as a reporter, editor and designer -- including stops at The Washington Post and the D.C. Examiner.
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