What PointsBet Hopes New Purchase Can Do To Expand In-Play Sports Betting

Posted on March 16, 2021

PointsBet hopes a new $43 million acquisition can help it become a leader in US in-play betting.

The Australian-based company will acquire Irish-based Banach Technology in a deal announced Monday. PointsBet executives believe it positions the sportsbook to be a leader in in-play sports betting.

“Excellence in live wagering – and our ability to position PointsBet as industry leaders with a differentiated, more seamless in-play product that stands out versus the competition – will come as a byproduct of our bookmaking expertise, as well as our ownership and internal operation of our technology infrastructure from end to end,” PointsBet USA CEO Johnny Aitken said in a press release.

“Today’s noteworthy acquisition of Banach Technology complements PointsBet’s in-house approach and fast forwards our technology and experience within the in-play vertical, setting us up well for the future of this burgeoning industry.”

What PointsBet gets in Banach

Banach provides risk management platforms and trading models to help develop in-play betting products. If all goes according to plan, PointsBet will receive the ability to maximize margins with Banach’s algorithms and trading experience.

Prior to its founding in 2015, Banach’s founding team helped build out Flutter Entertainment‘s quants division.

Now, they’ll join PointsBet:

  • CEO Mark Hughes — now PointsBet Chief Operating Officer
  • CTO Alex Zevenbergen — VP of Engineering, Trading Platform
  • Chief Analytics Officer Hadrien Lepretre — VP of Quantitative Analytics
  • Director Rob Reck — Special Advisor

In total, 40 Banach employees will join the PointsBet team.

“We could not be more excited about the burgeoning US opportunity and the role that the Banach team will play in accelerating and strengthening PointsBet’s pre-game, in-play and free-to-play offering,” Hughes said.

PointsBet Group CEO and Managing Director Sam Swanell expanded on Hughes’ statements:

“We have undertaken an in-house approach to proprietary technology as the key priority. In Banach, PointsBet has found a like-minded team of technologists, and the acquisition is a preferable approach to developing our in-play capabilities organically, given it allows us to dramatically ramp up our speed to market while still allowing us to own market-leading technology and continue to control our destiny.”

In-play’s US Growth Expectations

PointsBet expects in-play to eventually represent up to 75% of bets in the US sports betting market.

Currently, the US sports betting market is approximately 20% in-play. Don Best VP of Trading Craig Mucklow told the Las Vegas Review-Journal the US market could reach 65% share of wagers made live.

“It has become clear that the in-play opportunity will be very significant,” Swanell said. “Those with the best depth and breadth of product will win.”

In-play betting could also vastly alter the future of sports broadcasting, which could have implications in PointsBet’s deep relationship with NBC. Other operators are also working to build out their in-play options, like FanDuel partnering with SimpleBet.

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Pat Evans

Pat Evans is a Las Vegas-based reporter covering sports business. Evans previously worked at Front Office Sports and the Grand Rapids Business Journal. He has authored two books: Grand Rapids Beer and Nevada Beer.

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