Action Network acquired for $240 million by Better Collective

Jay Dieffenbach

The Action Network has been purchased by Better Collective for $240 million, signaling a continuation of the trend toward investing in the booming U.S. sports betting industry.

Better Collective is a Denmark-based media and data platform targeting sports bettors. It already owns European and U.S. betting properties including RotoGrinders and VegasInsider.

This agreement brings two of the sports betting industry leaders in offering tools to help bettors make informed wagering decisions.

To date in 2021, Action Network is on pace for $40 million in revenue this year, which would double its output in 2020.

Patrick Keane, CEO of Action, celebrated the company’s rapid rise in a statement about the transaction.

“Today marks a great achievement in the history of Action,” Keane said. “In just a few years, our team has managed to build a leading sports betting product and media business in the US market, making us attractive to a leading international player.

“I am thrilled about this outcome for our employees and investors and we look forward to continuing to forge great relationships with our league, media and sportsbook partners.”

Better Collective echoed its excitement about bringing aboard Action Network. Its updated estimates for U.S. revenue call for a goal of $100 million by 2022. Better Collective also raised its overall revenue and profit projections for fiscal 2021.

“Founded in 2017 and launched in 2018, Action is uniquely positioned in the US market as the premium sports content and product destination for US sports bettors,” a Better Collective statement said. “A trusted source for sports fans, Action’s media platforms provide an enhanced experience for its users through original sports news content, premium insights, deep menus of odds and proprietary betting tools and data.

“Action's diverse revenue model includes a rapidly-growing affiliate marketing business focused on customer acquisition for betting operators in the US as well as subscription products, anchored by Action Pro, Action Labs and Fantasy Labs.”

The Action Network, launched in October 2017, keys on sports betting tracking and information. Its early hires including Matt Moore from CBS and Darren Rovell from ESPN served to raise its profile.

Better Collective “won” the sales scramble, given there was a competitive auction for Action Network, according to a person familiar with the matter in a Wall Street Journal story that named DraftKings, FanDuel Inc. and private-equity firms as additional suitors for Action Network. Investment bank Moelis & Co. reportedly ran the sales process.

Also included in Better Collective pointed to the sports gambling boom, saying that, “As more states legalize online sports betting, the potential to further deepen and expand Action’s commercial partnerships with large US-based sportsbooks such as BetMGM, DraftKings, FanDuel and PointsBet is significant.”

Action realizes profits, in part, by signing deals that push readers and listeners to various sportsbooks.

Jesper Søgaard, CEO of Better Collective, referenced his company’s largest-ever acquisition.

“I am thrilled to welcome Action and its employees to Better Collective,” he said in a statement. “This acquisition, which is the largest in Better Collective’s history, gives us a leading position within affiliation in the US and a strong foundation for profiting from the continuous regulation of the US betting market.

“We add three new, very well positioned US sports media brands to our portfolio and welcome around 100 new colleagues, together representing an invaluable pool of knowledge and expertise on the US sports betting media market. By all accounts, this is a great day for Better Collective.”

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