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Genius Sports sees revenue surge

| By iGB Editorial Team
Sports data specialist boosted by contract wins

Genius Sports Group has reported 2017 revenue up 65% to £53.1m (€59.7m/$69.6m), driven principally by contract wins.

The sports data specialist and owner of Betgenius, which is a partner of bodies such as football's English Premier League, Major League Baseball, golf’s PGA Tour and the NCAA, the governing body of US college sports, was recently bought out by funds advised by Apax Partners.

Earnings more than doubled to £11.3m in the year to December 31, 2017, but capital expenditure of almost £16m meant a loss in terms of underlying business cash-flow.

During the course of 2017, it partnered with rival Perform in a deal to work with Football DataCo, which has the rights to statistics from the professional football leagues in England and Scotland.

It also began working with several other rights-holders and esports groups DreamHack and FACEIT, and bought volleyball information provider Data Project.

In a statement filed with Companies House, Genius said: “The group’s primary objectives are the continued enhancement of products and services within its existing sportsbook management and customer marketing activities alongside additional investment and development of activities in the Genius Sports and Genius Sports Media divisions.

“Through active investment in infrastructure, highly skilled technical and business development resources, it is the group’s strategy to work in partnership with sports to provide full service solutions for the commercialisation and development of sports’ inherent IP and assets, through the media and betting verticals.”

Genius Sports’ potential in the US was illustrated by its purchase by Apax Funds in July, just two months after the repeal of PASPA, which will further open up its services to major sports leagues and betting partners.

At the time, Apax Partners’ Gabriele Cipparrone said: “We have been attracted to the sports data market for some time, having seen live data and technology as key drivers of growth. Within this sector, Genius Sports Group stood out due to the breadth of its offering, its industry-leading technology, and its excellent reputation as a ‘high integrity’ data provider.”

Reflecting on Genius Sports’ 2017 figures, analysts at Regulus Partners said the Apax takeover will be transformational as new investment will allow the company to compete with rivals such as Perform and Sportradar.

“An investment problem that seems to have plagued Genius for years has been resolved – and it is likely no coincidence that this has happened shortly after such strong topline momentum has been delivered,” said Regulus Partners. “However, the extent to which big cheques can generate big returns remains to be seen, in our view.”

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