Paddy Power Betfair in talks to buy Fanduel

Gambling site Nigel Eccles

Gambling site Nigel Eccles

Paddy Power Betfair this morning confirmed it was in talks with FanDuel over a potential takeover "to target the prospective United States sports betting market".

In a brief statement today in response to media speculation, the company said talks are ongoing and there was no certainty as to whether agreement will be reached.

The move comes just days after the USA relaxed its gambling laws, providing an opening for the likes of William Hill and Paddy Power Betfair.

The move is created to capitalise on the US Supreme Court's decision on Monday to strike down a 1994 ban that prevented most states from permitting sports betting. It offers exchange sports betting and pari-mutuel betting products, fixed odds games betting, online games and casino, and business-to-business services, as well as peer to peer games, including online bingo and poker.

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The decision to end the £3.3 billion contract this year has been described as a "bailout" by Labour and trade unions. The company also has already funded its full GBP165 million loan commitment to the East Coast franchise.

FanDuel, founded in Edinburgh, is backed by private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, Google Capital and NBC Sports Ventures.

Players choose which contest they want to enter, build fantasy sports teams that do not breach a fantasy salary cap, and engage in head-to-head or multi-player contests.

The report comes after the US Supreme Court this week voted to overturn the federal ban on sports betting across the country - a ruling that was met with praise by FanDuel and rival operator DraftKings. Finally, Numis Securities restated a "hold" rating and issued a GBX 8,320 ($116.04) price target on shares of Paddy Power Betfair in a research report on Wednesday, March 14th.

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