PENN Entertainment Successfully Acquires Barstool Sports
PENN Entertainment, Inc. has announced the successful completion of its acquisition of Barstool Sports, Inc. for approximately $388 million. This marks a significant milestone for Barstool Sports, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary, as PENN has acquired the remaining interest in the company after previously acquiring a 36% stake in February 2020.
Founded in 2003 by Dave Portnoy as a free sports and gambling newspaper, Barstool Sports has grown into a prominent digital player in sports, lifestyle, and entertainment, boasting over 200 million followers. The company’s vast content offerings, including podcasts, video, social media, live events, pay-per-view, and a growing commerce business, have solidified its position as a multimedia powerhouse.
Since partnering with Barstool Sports in 2020, PENN has successfully implemented an omnichannel strategy, leveraging the well-known brand and personalities of Barstool to develop Barstool Sportsbook into a leading online betting platform currently live in 15 states. PENN has also launched retail-branded Barstool Sportsbooks at its properties nationwide. Moving forward, PENN and Barstool Sports will continue to innovate and collaborate, including across Barstool’s sports bar footprint, to deliver integrated gaming and entertainment experiences.
In the past three years, Barstool Sports has seen remarkable growth, including a 194% increase in its audience and over 1.6 billion total podcast downloads. The company has also expanded its live event programming and launched TwoYay, its proprietary NIL marketplace, among other successes.
PENN and Barstool Sports initially announced their exclusive sports betting and iGaming partnership in January 2020, with PENN acquiring its initial stake of 36% for a total consideration of approximately $163 million in cash and non-voting convertible preferred stock. The acquisition represents a further step in PENN’s ongoing efforts to broaden its presence in the casino and sportsbook markets.
“We are extremely pleased to welcome Barstool Sports fully into the PENN Entertainment family,” said PENN Entertainment CEO and President, Jay Snowden. “Barstool is a proven, powerful media brand with an authentic voice and vast, loyal audience that provides us with a strong top of funnel for new customer acquisition and organic cross-selling opportunities across our growing interactive division. Barstool, combined with theScore’s reach and highly engaged user base, creates a massive digital footprint and ecosystem that will serve to propel Barstool Sportsbook and our uniquely integrated media and gaming business. Further, the Barstool Sportsbook will greatly benefit from the upcoming migration to our proprietary technology stack, a move that will significantly enhance the overall product offering and deliver meaningful upside.”
“Barstool Sports is bigger than ever and has become more than I ever dreamed of,” said Dave Portnoy, Founder of Barstool Sports. “I’m very thankful to the Barstool team and Stoolies who have been along for the ride. I’m looking forward to this next chapter with PENN.”
“This is a huge moment for Barstool Sports that was made possible by a lot of people and a lot of grit,” said Erika Ayers, CEO of Barstool Sports. “Our focus has always been to create relevant and entertaining content for our fans and to deliver strong results for our partners. It’s exciting to have that vision recognized and to be able to put it to work inside of PENN. We have the best fan base on the planet, and we look forward to doing even more for them with PENN’s support.”