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Entain credits ‘Wrexham Effect’ and blockbuster docuseries for attracting new and engaged sports fans



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Wrexham AFC is making its debut in League Two of the English Football League this weekend, after scoring a promotion from the National League and climbing to Hollywood fame with the docuseries, Welcome to Wrexham. To mark this milestone, Entain, the global sports betting, gaming, and interactive entertainment group, reveals the ‘Wrexham Effect’ in sports betting.

After Hollywood icons Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney took over Wrexham AFC in November 2020, Entain’s Ladbrokes and Coral brands in the UK recorded an increase of 59% in the number of bets placed during the National League’s 2021/22 season from 2017/18. This far outpaces that of the Championship League, League One and League Two, which saw a 15%, 32% and 24% increase respectively, and demonstrates the powerful impact that the docuseries has had on the popularity of non-league football.

Other non-league clubs have seen the impact too – including Wrexham AFC’s previous rival, Notts County FC, who finished in second place in the 2022/23 National League season and saw an 89% increase in the number of bets on the team from 2021/22.

The ‘Wrexham Effect’ has also taken over on the other side of the world, with Entain Australia recording an increase of 781% on the number of bets placed on Wrexham AFC football games, from 2019/20 to 2022/23. And across the pond in the US, the number of BetMGM bets placed on any Wrexham game has increased a staggering 3818% from the 2020/21 season to the 2022/23 season. Thanks to the celebrity status of the new owners, Wrexham AFC has seen a surge of popularity in the US, with Google Trends data even revealing that the Red Dragons have become one of the most searched for teams, more than the nation’s top soccer league, Major League Soccer (MLS).

It is not just football that has benefited from the boom in sporting docuseries, with the NBA experiencing a surge in popularity following the release of The Last Dance on Netflix in April 2020, which followed the success story of the Chicago Bulls’ dream team:

  • Data from Entain’s global brands reveals that the number of bets placed on NBA games increased by 46% from the 2019/20 season to 2020/21.
  • In the home of the NBA league, data from BetMGM evidences growing interest in the sport, with a 61% increase in the number of bets from 2021 to 2022.

Likewise, Formula 1 has attracted a cohort of new fans, spearheaded by the popularity of the Drive for Survive series on Netflix. Viewership figures for the docuseries get better every season, with the debut of season five seeing nearly 570,000 viewers over its first week, a 40% jump over 2022’s season four debut:

  • Data from Entain’s global brands reveals that the number of bets placed on Formula 1 races increased by 16% in 2022 compared to the year prior, and by 63% compared to 2019, when the first season of Drive for Survive aired.
  • Mirroring this growth, data from BetMGM in the US shows a 142% increase in the number of bets placed on Formula 1 in 2022, versus 2021.

Dominic Grounsell, Chief Commercial Officer at Entain, said: “We’ve seen a huge step change in the way fans engage with their favourite sports, and behind-the-scenes access in sporting docuseries has only heightened this further. They highlight the importance of finding new and innovative ways for fans to interact with sports and support their favourite teams, but also attract new fans to the sport – and they want to extend their entertainment by backing a team with a bet.

“At Entain, we’re constantly monitoring how this movement is evolving, listening to our customers, and creating content that resonates with them. Coral’s ‘Taking the Reins’ documentary series is a prime example of this and reinforces our commitment to bringing moments of excitement to fans beyond the track, pitch, or court.”

Entain Australia, in collaboration with Racing Victoria, has also produced a sport docudrama based around the running of the All-Star Mile in Melbourne. The documentary plans to give viewers a behind-the-scenes perspective in the lead-up to the running of one of Australia’s richest races. It will air later on this year.

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Playson adds award-winning portfolio to iGP’s content aggregation hub



Playson adds award-winning portfolio to iGP’s content aggregation hub
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Supplier to provide creative line-up of slots to the world’s leading operators

Playson, the fast-growing digital entertainment supplier, has secured a content partnership with iGaming technology provider iGP to offer its games in multiple jurisdictions under a Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) licence.

The agreement will see many of the studio’s player-favourites, including 3 Pots Riches: Hold and Win, Power Crown: Hold and Win and Coin Strike: Hold and Win, made available to iGP’s customers via the platform provider’s new centralised aggregation hub, iGaming Deck.

Creator and provider of iGaming solutions iGP was founded in 2016 and currently hosts more than 100 game providers. Its iGaming Deck provides a catalogue of more than 5,000 titles and a single API integration.

This strategic deal bolsters Playson’s top-tier position in key markets worldwide and broadens the reach of its growing portfolio, as it continues to unveil a packed roadmap for the year ahead.

Blanka Homor, Sales Director at Playson, said: “We are delighted to join forces with iGP to supply our vibrant slots to operators through its iGaming Deck.

“This partnership will invite further recognition for our portfolio, which continues to grow at a faster pace than ever. Our 2024 roadmap is jam-packed with a variety of game types and themes, which will be highly beneficial to iGP’s operator network looking to broaden their casino offering.”

Inesa Glazaite, CCO at iGP, said: “It makes sense for iGP to partner with other fast-growing iGaming companies like Playson. Our stable platform and the carefully crafted tech stack behind iGaming Deck, our cloud-based games aggregator, is the perfect home for Playson’s legendary slot games. Together, we’re set to help operators around the world reach their iGaming potential and deliver experiences their players will love. I’m looking forward to working with the Playson team and seeing the next wave of innovative games they bring to the table.”

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GGPoker Launches Exclusive WSOP Circuit UK Satellites Press Release



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GGPoker, the World’s Biggest Poker Room, is proud to launch exclusive online satellite tournaments to the upcoming WSOP Circuit UK £1,100 Main Event, which will be hosted at Nottingham’s Dusk Till Dawn Poker Club from March 15 through March 24.

The winner of the WSOP Circuit UK Main Event, which boasts a £500,000 guarantee, will claim a prestigious WSOP-C Gold Ring and the lion’s share of the massive prize pool.

Phased WSOP-C UK satellite tournaments are currently running at GGPoker, with buy-in to Centroll satellite tournaments set at £0.01, Phase 1 at £1,10, Phase 2 at £11 and the Final Phase at £110. At least five WSOP-C UK £1,100 Main Event tickets will be won in each Final Phase satellite.

Players that win £1,100 Main Event tickets will be registered into the exclusive OnLive Day 1 hosted by GGPoker on March 19, with all Day 1 survivors making it through to the live Day 2 on March 24.

“We’re delighted to partner once more with World Series of Poker and Dusk Till Dawn, with UK and Irish players promised a super event in Nottingham next month,” said Angela Martin, UK & Ireland Head of Marketing at GGPoker. “Players can win their way to the WSOP-C £1,100 Main Event for just a single penny and take aim at a guaranteed £500,000 and WSOP Gold Ring!”

New GGPoker players can also claim the poker room’s Welcome Bonus, earn even more rewards with the Honeymoon for Newcomers promotion and automatically join GGPoker’s Fish Buffet loyalty program, with regular cash prizes on offer.

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The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation said it has asked the Governance Commission for GOCCs (GCG) for approval of salary step increments based on employees’ length of service to correct distortions caused by its new Compensation and Position Classification System (CPCS).

In a letter to GCG Chairperson Atty. Marius Corpus dated February 22, 2024, PAGCOR Chairman and CEO Alejandro H. Tengco said the PAGCOR Board of Directors has approved the implementation of step increments but it needs GCG approval.

“Parallel to the thrust of the PAGCOR Board of Directors to prioritize the welfare of the employees, the PAGCOR Board approved the Implementation of Step Increment based on Length of Service, subject to GCG’s review and approval,” he said in the letter.

The PAGCOR chief said the step increment is only the first of many appeals that the agency plans to lodge with the GCG so that PAGCOR employees may enjoy competitive salaries and benefits comparable to other revenue-generating GOCCs.

PAGCOR received its Authority to Implement the CPCS on January 31 this year. However, majority of the employees were dismayed to see that their take-home pay decreased when they received their salaries on the first payday under CPCS on February 15, 2024.

The CPCS also caused distortions in pay scale since all employees were reverted to Pay Step 1 regardless of their years of service. This means that a new employee in a certain position gets the same salary as someone who has been in the same position for 15 years or more.

Chairman Tengco said the Step Increment appeal is only the first of many which the agency plans to lodge with the GCG to remedy the overall decrease in employees’ take home pay, especially for those who occupy the lowest rungs in the organization.

“We hope that the GCG will positively respond to our appeal so that all tenured PAGCOR employees will not feel shortchanged, and instead receive the compensation that they deserve under the bounds of the law,” he added.

A provision under the CPCS implementing guidelines states that “one step increment shall be granted to qualified personnel for every three years of continuous satisfactory service in the present position.”

Records show that as of December 31, 2023, a total of 7,057 PAGCOR personnel or 72.60% of the agency’s workforce have been in service for more than three years in their respective positions.

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