888 Hires US Head, Sets Launch Date For Next SI Sportsbook

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SI Sportsbook

888 has hired a new US head as it looks to roll out its SI Sportsbook across the US.

The London-listed firm announced Tuesday it hired former Bleacher Report CEO Howard Mittman as its US president.

Subsequently, Mittman will be responsible for 888’s US operations, including the partnership with Authentic Brands Group (ABG), the owner of the Sports Illustrated brand.

What 888 said

888 CEO Itai Pazner said:

“Howard has an exceptional track record at some of the world’s best known media brands. He brings a huge amount of knowledge of the US digital landscape, has exceptionally strong relationships across the world of sports and media, and was the outstanding candidate after a thorough search.”

At Bleacher Report, Mittman oversaw the the launch of B/R Betting, Bleacher Report’s sports betting practice. He also helped strike multiple partnerships with US sports betting operators.

A unique proposition?

Mittman said he had been “hugely impressed” by the people he met at 888.

“The partnership with ABG and Sports Illustrated gives us a unique opportunity to deliver world-class betting and gaming products as part of a fully integrated experience with a leading sports media brand,” Mittman said.

Another SI Sportsbook on the way

The SI Sportsbook is currently only live in Colorado. However, it will also launch in Virginia in May, 888 said Wednesday in a trading update.

Additional states will follow later this year.

Data from those states could make it easier to understand exactly how SI Sportsbook is performing. Colorado does not report revenue numbers by operator.

What to expect from SI Sportsbook?

The SI Sportsbook is built on the BetBright platform 888 acquired in 2019. The company only fully migrated its sportsbook over to the platform in the last year.

However, analysts at Eilers & Krejcik were somewhat critical of the product in their recent Q1 2022 app review. The report praised the breadth of live markets, but added:

“Sports Illustrated’s entry into the online sports betting market largely landed with a thud among our tester group. It fails in key areas and has enough technical problems (some crashing reports and many bet placement issues) to question its launch state.”