GameChanger: Meet the Man Shifting the Sports Gambling Landscape
John Levy, CEO and founder of theScore, revolutionized the way people followed sports with his company’s industry-leading app. With the overturn of PASPA signalling the start of the sports betting gold rush hit, Levy used his platform to shift the odds in his favor.
Last year theScore became the first media company to enter the sports betting market as an operator, and while DFS giants DraftKings and FanDuel already had direct access to those willing to wager on the outcome of sporting events, theScore’s content-driven strategy had already won over the trust of a much larger audience.
This proved to be advantageous when theScore Bet app saw that nearly 75% of all users come directly from theScore media app.
The Canada based company is also a strong advocate in the fight for single event wagering in the country, and the company is confident that the local market’s familiarity with the brand will make them the leading product in the growing marketplace.
Where the United States chose to crackdown on the use of illegal offshore bookmaking sites, Canada took a softer approach. Levy believes that this has created a large pocket of Canadian sports bettors who continue to regularly enjoy wagering, likely unaware of the illegal activity, and many who would move to a regulated product if offered.
Similar in population, the state of California also finds itself in a battle against tribal casinos as the state looks to offer regulated sports betting. When asked which would excite him most, and open the Canadian market or Californian market, Levy offered little hesitation before leaning towards his native country.
“I think we’re just going to kill up here. We would be the trendsetter up here.”
As the country looks to expand its legal betting offerings, theScore is confident in both its reputation and product’s ability to dominate the local market.
Through a strategic partnership with the Penn National Gaming group, theScore Bet mobile app was granted operational rights in 11 states, and the 20-year deal saw Penn National take a 4.7% stake in theScore.
Penn National also has agreements in place with other operators. DraftKings gained access to seven states, PointsBet five, and The Stars Group nine for their FoxBet product.
Changing The Way You Bet
In the hour-long conversation, nearly everything came back to one thing. The end-user.
“We realized that people were already coming to our site to use our information to bet,” stated Levy in a recent interview with The Dales Report. “Why not allow them to take that information and bet it all at the same place?”
theScore worked hard to create touchpoints that allowed users to migrate seamlessly between the two apps, and with over 300 unique pieces of content going live on the media app daily, customers can read the latest breaking news and wager on its potential impact without ever leaving the page.
“Our thesis has always been that they’re a better way to get into the sports betting business,” and Levy cites three key factors that he feels set his company’s product apart from the competition.
Foremost, the company has already established itself as a trustworthy source of news for millions of sports fans, and with 4 to 5 million actively using the app, and hundreds of millions touch the product regularly via other outlets, theScore has already entered in a dialogue with potential clients at some point or another.
Next, he credits the overall quality of the product itself, and never-ending quest to enhance the user experience.
“You’re going to win based on the product, and the reason our app works is because the app works.”
Years of data have given them a head start in the mission to deliver customers what they want and to get them where they want to be faster.
Lastly, Levy highlights the fact that the company only serves itself. The lack of TV assets and big brand concerns essentially leave theScore in a position to navigate freely in areas where competitors are often handcuffed.
TheScore looks the change the way people bet on sports, and Levy’s mission to do so is evident when discussing apparent problems with rival products.
“If you take a hard look at our competitors, they are really just transnational apps.”
Traditional betting sites offer a left-hand sidebar to select the league and then serve up the odds. One-click puts the bet on your ticket, and once all wagers have been selected, the user is on their way.
For many sports bettors, that next stop is often to another sports-related site.
In today’s fast-paced world, consumers want, and often times expect everything in the same place. While FoxBet has also taken a similar content-centric approach, theScore stands alone as the true pioneer in this space.
While DraftKings and FanDuel continue to spend a large part of their profits on advertisement deals that position their brands with media outlets, theScore has flipped the script in a way that allows them to dictate the narrative.