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Fantasy Sports

Betegy and FTN team to boost fantasy sports experience for fans

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Betegy and FTN team to boost fantasy sports experience for fans
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Leaders in fantasy-sports data and customised sports-data visualisation partner to elevate the action for fans and bettors

 The fantasy-sports fan experience is poised to reach a new level with the announcement that two of the fastest growing players in the field of sports data are joining forces.

Fantasy sports data provider FTN Network has partnered with Betegy, the premier independent provider of personalised sports data and gaming visualisation, to provide an all-encompassing experience for fantasy sports fans and sports bettors.

Among the two companies’ inaugural collaborations is the FTN show “Betting with Benny and Tino.”

“Our partnership with Betegy allows us to leverage the latest technology for our media platform and to allow consumers of betting-oriented and fantasy content to have a unique, one-of-kind experience,” said Eliot Crist, FTN Networks chief operating officer.

“This important partnership with the outstanding team at FTN represents a key building block in our ongoing development of the definitive bridge between raw data and sports viewers, gaming enthusiasts and bettors.” Said Alex Kornilov, CEO of Betegy.  

“Bringing data to life is essential to engaging fans fully, as more and more providers across sports and games – and across screens – are realising.  With this FTN alliance, Betegy’s presence encompasses traditional sports like American and European football and basketball, traditional gaming such as cards, and emerging categories such as Esports and, now, fantasy sports.”

The global fantasy sports market is projected to grow from $20.36 billion in 2020 to $22.31 billion in 2021 for a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.5%, per a September 2021 report from Research & Markets.

The alliance follows important commercial agreements signed by Betegy, most recently including ESTV, PokerGO, Germany’s Tipico, as well as Parimatch, Bwin and Coingaming.io, as it continues to bring its EGR award-winning solution to tier-one gaming and sports betting companies worldwide.

Fantasy Sports

AC Milan partners with Sorare to be part of global NFT fantasy football game

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AC Milan partners with Sorare to be part of global NFT fantasy football game
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AC Milan and Sorare are delighted to announce today an exclusive multi-year partnership that sees the player-owned fantasy sports game leveraging non-fungible tokens become the Club’s Official NFT Fantasy Football Game Partner, joining the Rossoneri’s roster of Premium Partners.

With this new deal, AC Milan officially enters Sorare’s NFT-based fantasy football game, in which users can collect, trade and play with officially licensed digital cards as part of an immersive worldwide gaming experience. Starting from the 2022-23 season, the over 2 million registered users will be able to collect, trade and play with digital cards from AC Milan, strengthening even further the connection between the international Rossoneri fans and the Club they love in the digital world.

The partnership with Sorare, a leader in the fast-growing football NFT space, offers AC Milan an important new digital fan engagement tool, which gives fans and gamers globally the platform to celebrate, share and own their football passion. It also brings a new revenue stream created through the establishment of a new game licensing category: non-fungible token licensing.

The new partnership is a significant development for AC Milan in its wider Web 3.0 strategy. The Club is moving further into the NFT world by working with experts to create unique digital experiences for its fans, which aim to give them more access, more ownership and bring them even closer to their beloved Club.

Casper Stylsvig, Chief Revenue Officer of AC Milan, commented: “We are delighted to welcome Sorare into our exclusive family of Premium Partners. Today marks the beginning of a new journey with an exciting and young brand that is at the forefront of the NFT revolution and that has been able to merge digital collectibles and fantasy sports. As an innovative Club, this is a sector that we are exploring with a clear strategy in mind, with the goal to offer our over 500 million fans across the globe with exciting additional ways to engage with their Club. That is why we are pleased to partner with Sorare and introduce their digital collectibles to our fanbase.”

Michael Meltzer, Head of Business Development of Sorare added:We’re building a gaming experience fueled by passion where fans can connect with football and a global community. On Sorare, they can truly own the game. We’re proud to partner with the legendary AC Milan to help them connect with fans globally through the future of football collectibles.” 

Sorare combines digital collectibles with fantasy sports to bring fans closer to the game they love. Since it was founded in 2018, the company has experienced incredible demand and hypergrowth, reaching more than 2 million users around the world with 260 partnering sports organisations.

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Compliance Updates

The Finnish Supreme Administrative Court rules that skill-based fantasy sports games belong to Veikkaus monopoly

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The Finnish Supreme Administrative Court rules that skill-based fantasy sports games belong to Veikkaus monopoly
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Article written by Antti Koivula, consulting legal advisor at Legal Gaming

On May 24, 2022 the Finnish Supreme Administrative Court delivered its judgment on IS-Liigapörssi-case (KHO:2022:60), in which the Supreme Administrative Court analysed whether skill-based fantasy sports games are within the scope of the Finnish Lotteries Act (1047/2001) (“Lotteries Act”) and thus belong to the state-owned gambling operator Veikkaus Oy’s (“Veikkaus”) monopoly.

Finland has a statutory gambling monopoly in place, under which Veikkaus has exclusive rights to operate and market gambling. According to the Lotteries Act, all games which include a participation fee, prizes of monetary value and the result is based on chance, are within Veikkaus monopoly.  The main question in the case was if it is enough the game to be even remotely based on chance to be within the scope of the Lotteries Act and thus belong to Veikkaus monopoly, and if that was the case, whether the element of chance was present in the skill-based fantasy sports games in question.

IS-Liigapörssi-case concerned popular fantasy sports games in Finland, in which participants form virtual ice hockey teams from real ice hockey players and points were awarded based on the ice hockey players performance on real ice hockey matches. The fantasy sports games included entry fees and prizes and they had been run since 1995 by a Finnish media giant Sanoma Media Finland Oy (“Sanoma”). It was an undeniable fact that skilled and analytical participants who invested a considerable amount of time to the fantasy sports games outperformed participants who picked the players randomly.

The background of the case is lengthy, as the national authorities had tried to shut down the fantasy sports games run by Sanoma for more than a decade. In 2008 the Ministry of the Interior made a request for investigation for the police, which carried out a preliminary investigation. However, in 2010 the National Prosecution Authority (“NPA”) made a non-prosecution decision stating that it was left unresolved whether the Fantasy Sports games in question are within the scope of the Lotteries Act.

In 2017 the gambling enforcement authority, the National Police Board (“NPB”) started administrative proceedings against Sanoma regarding the fantasy sports games and two years later in 2019 the process had reached the point in which the NPB imposed a prohibition order and a conditional fine of EUR 300,000 for Sanoma on the basis that Sanoma was not allowed to run the fantasy sports games as they qualified as gambling. Sanoma appealed to the Helsinki Administrative Court arguing that the fantasy sports games in question were skill-games with which chance had no effect on the results and thus outside the scope of the Lotteries Act, but in 2021 the Helsinki Administrative Court ruled in favour of the NPB. Sanoma appealed to the Supreme Administrative Court.

The Supreme Administrative Court acknowledged that participants knowledge and skills were meaningful in the context of success, but reminded that at the same time random factors outside the participant’s control had a significant importance too. Thus, the chance of winning was at least partially based on luck. As the fantasy sports games also included entry fees and prize money, only Veikkaus was allowed to run them in Finland.

The Supreme Administrative Court’s decision hardly came as a surprise. The Lotteries Act’s definition of gambling is extremely broad, from which a good example is that even an ice fishing competition and an auction were previously deemed to fall within it. Nevertheless, the decision yet further strengthened the NPB’s authority and it remains to be seen what is the next competition or event after which they’ll go next.

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Fantasy Sports

Low6 Announces Groundbreaking NFT Innovation in its UltimateFan Fantasy Sports Game

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Low6 Announces Groundbreaking NFT Innovation in its UltimateFan Fantasy Sports Game
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Sports gamification innovators develop technology to incorporate non-fungible tokens (NFTs) into their white-label iGaming products

Sports gamification leader Low6 Limited Inc (Low6), today announced the introduction of NFTs to their class-leading fantasy gaming product, UltimateFan.

The highly innovative inclusion of NFTs into mobile gameplay—whereby NFTs can be simultaneously held within the ecosystem of a game and a user’s crypto wallet—offers a new frontier of possibilities for sports teams, betting operators and affiliates looking to expand into  the blockchain space.

Low6’s suite of white-label iGaming products have been developed for some of the biggest names in sports, gaming and mobile technology, including the PGA Tour, UFC, Uber Eats and Points Bet. Their highly innovative platform, based on a unique community-first approach to sports gamification, now offers products for English soccer, American football, and specialized co-promotional products for the Cincinnati Bengals and the Jacksonville Jaguars.

With its brand-new UF Coach feature, Low6 has now introduced NFTs to UltimateFan gameplay. UF Coach bridges the divide between fantasy sports and NFTs, via a groundbreaking consolidation of in-game and out-of-game structures. This unique dual utilisation of NFTs will bring value within the crypto market, while simultaneously adding a new dimension to gameplay.

“The introduction of NFTs to UltimateFan is a natural progression, an incredible value proposition to our users, and a big step forward for fan-first experiential gamification” says Jamie Mitchell, Low6 CEO and Co-Founder.

“The evolution of the UltimateFan product, and its unbridled success in UK and North American markets, are emblematic of the innovation and forward-thinking approach upon which Low6 prides itself.

“Our strategy of introducing NFTs to fantasy gameplay keeps us at the forefront of sports gamification, adding an exciting new realm of potential for our partners and affiliates.”

For its trailblazing approach and next-generation gamification breakthroughs, Low 6 won the ”Virtual and Fantasy Operator” and “Rising Star” Awards at the 2021 EGR Operator Awards, and best “Freeplay Gaming Supplier” at the EGR North America Awards 2022. CEO Jamie Mitchell is a finalist for the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ 2022.

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