Business By The Books: Tekkorp SPAC Scraps Sports Betting Plans

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Tekkorp is no longer looking for a sports betting company to acquire and take public through a SPAC.

The blank-check company announced the deal was dead Tuesday after it chose not to seek an extension to the Oct. 26 deadline.

Tekkorp was targeting a gaming business with a $1-$2 billion enterprise value, according to its registration statement from August 2020. The company ended with $251.3 million held in trust and will redeem 100% of shares at $10.05.

What about online IL sports betting license?

Tekkorp was the only applicant that won one of the three $20 million standalone Illinois sports betting licenses this April.

The application listed Mexican sportsbook brand Caliente as its DBA. Playtech, which as a stake in Caliente’s interactive business, said in July a SPAC transaction was no longer happening as expected:

Capital market conditions have deteriorated significantly since the transaction was initially contemplated and, accordingly, this transaction is no longer being pursued in the same manner. However, the Company continues to explore alternative opportunities with Caliplay management to build a standalone US gaming business under the Caliente brand focused on the Hispanic community in the US. Both parties also continue to have discussions with the SPAC and its associates regarding this alternative opportunity.

Conversations between the SPAC and Playtech were ongoing as of Sept. 22.

An Illinois Gaming Board spokesperson said the board is aware of Tekkorp’s announcement but has no comment at this time.

Genius, Sportradar settle lawsuit

Sportradar must stop all unofficial data scouting at matches for multiple soccer leagues including the English Premier League under the settlement of a Genius Sports lawsuit.

Genius is also allowed to retain exclusive betting data rights for the leagues, which Sportradar originally sued over in March 2020.

Genius sold a sublicense for a delayed feed of betting data to Sportradar through 2024.

PBH announces ADW plans for sports betting app

PointsBet is jumping into the online horse racing betting business with Stronach Group. This will put PointsBet in more than 30 states as the brand focuses on a regional approach to marketing.

The horse racing betting content will be integrated into the PointsBet sportsbook app and should launch in early 2023. The product will focus on traditional pari-mutuel betting instead of fixed-odds horse betting.

The five-year agreement with Stronach is accompanied by sub-agreements with Xpressbet for a B2B advanced deposit wagering platform, Monarch Content Management for simulcast content, and AmTote for a totalisator agreement.

BetMGM launches NHL-branded iCasino games

BetMGM will launch Evolution-developed iCasino games that feature NHL teams in Michigan, New Jersey, Ontario and Pennsylvania.

Included in the launch are table games that sports bettors typically gravitate to including roulette and blackjack.

The games will prominently feature the NHL logo with team logos appearing throughout a rendered arena.

PENN pumping millions into property changes

PENN Entertainment is putting $850 million into four casino projects, but it is not all coming from its available cash.

Gaming & Leisure Properties, the owner of all four properties that PENN leases while operating the casinos, will provide up to $575 million in financing for the projects. PENN had $1.71 billion in cash and equivalents and $1.55 billion in debt as of June 30.

More details on the deal and the new master lease stemming from it are available in the 8K.

Elsewhere, PENN and Kambi agreed to early-termination terms as Barstool Sportsbook moves to proprietary tech.

CZR refinances debt

Caesars lowered its interest expense and extended its debt maturities with $3 billion in senior secured credit due 2028.

The new debt includes a $750 million secured term loan and a $2.25 billion secured revolving credit facility. Caesars will prepay $750 million in existing term B loans due December 2024.

Full details are available in the 8K.