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FOX Bet Winding Down: Why Flutter Closed Brand

Penny August 12, 2023

Users of the sportsbook FOX Bet in the United States were shocked to hear that the popular operator will close by the end of August 2023. In late July, it was announced that the brand would be phased out by its owner Flutter between July 31 and August 31, meaning that regular users of the app would no longer be able to access their accounts from September onwards.

Fox bet

Given that Flutter is a global player in the iGaming sphere, dropping an established brand has undoubtedly caused some concern within interested parties in the industry. However, the top dogs of the operator have been keen to stress that this move shouldn’t be too much of a worry and is a simple restructure of products.

In a statement released by the parent company, it was clarified that, while FOX Bet in its current format will be fully phased out, the brand won’t fully disappear. According to that press release, FOX will retain the rights to use the branding that had previously been managed by Flutter. It expanded that there will be a new Super 6 game released later in the year, though this will be separate from the previous game of the same name. Essentially, this most recent move is more an uncoupling between the two entities, rather than complete closure of the brand. While the branding will no longer come under the umbrella that includes names as popular as PokerStars, FanDuel, and PaddyPower, it could continue under new management. But why would these companies make such a move if the relationship was successful?

Time to Focus on High-Performing Portfolio

The FOX Bet venture may have been a fruitful one for Flutter Entertainment but it looks like the company is taking the time to focus all of its attention on its biggest growth assets, especially when it comes to the US market. According to a report by the Racing Post in the UK, as the operator was getting set to announce its financial figures, much of the discussion surrounding them was on its expansion in the US market. As the industry has continued to evolve and grow in the States, a number of global players have looked to establish a strong portfolio that will give them a strong foothold in the region. As such, Flutter will be looking to take advantage of its highest-performing assets. In this case, that would likely be Fanduel, which saw a nearly 100% year-on-year increase in revenue for the first quarter of this year. That takes its revenue to around $1 billion for one brand alone.

That performance is key to why focus will be keenly on Fanduel and PokerStars. In the same report from the Racing Post, it was said that the company’s entire retail revenue for the same period in the UK and Ireland region was around $700 million. That’s a significant amount less than what Flutter sees from just its US arm in Fanduel. And that’s a big part of why FOX Bet has suddenly closed. As a brand, it couldn’t set itself apart from the competition in the industry, including the rest of its parent company’s portfolio. According to the Wall Street Journal, the sportsbook was slow to achieve the growth expected and, because of this, the two companies decided it was time to cut their losses and shutter the brand. With the strong performance elsewhere, it makes sense to cut ties with what was essentially a dead weight. 

What Does This Mean for Users?

As it stands, it isn’t entirely clear what this move means for users of FOX Bet, other than that their accounts will ultimately be closed. However, the Hollywood Reporter claims that Flutter will retain the customer database from the brand, which would suggest that there could be the option for players to shift over to one of the company’s other properties. If that’s the case, it appears that the operator will see the shuttering of this young brand as being a good chance for consolidation of its user base into a more unified product.

Either way, this does mean that the US sportsbook market is slightly weaker. While this brand was ultimately owned by the same company as a number of others, FOX Bet did provide another option to users. Instead, it appears that the market is becoming more of a monopoly, pushing players in the states towards using Fanduel over any other operators. When compared with the industry across Europe, that is slightly concerning, and many would like more competition and greater choice in their gaming.

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