Entain agrees new media rights and distribution deal with Arena Racing

19th March 2021 10:37 am GMT

London-listed betting and gaming operator Entain has signed a long-term media rights and distribution deal with Arena Racing Company for horse and greyhound racing.

The long-term deal will see a range of horse racing and greyhound racing products delivered across Entain’s brands, including Ladbrokes, Coral, Betdaq, bwin and Sportingbet.

The horse racing media rights include all race day data and audio-visual coverage for races from Arena Racing’s sixteen UK racecourses, which include Doncaster, Newcastle, Chepstow and Lingfield Park. The deal also includes South African and Australian content and will commence on 1 January 2022 and run through to 31 December 2029.

The two companies will also launch a new joint venture for the distribution of greyhound racing content from Entain, Arena Racing and independent greyhound tracks.

The JV will become the vehicle for licensing media rights to Entain and other domestic and international betting operators and will launch on 1 January 2024.

The JV will hold the long-term exclusive rights to greyhound content from twelve stadia owned across Arena Racing (Newcastle, Nottingham, Perry Barr and Sunderland), independent stadia within Greyhound Media Group (Kinsley, Sheffield, Swindon and Yarmouth), as well as those owned by Entain (Crayford, Hove, Monmore Green and Romford).

“We are delighted to be partnering with Arena Racing on such a comprehensive long-term deal that will give certainty to both parties for the benefit of both horse racing and greyhound racing, as well as helping them navigate the Covid challenges and emerge stronger when the world gets back to normal,” said Entain chief procurement officer Adrian Bower.

“This is a progressive deal for greyhound racing, that will deliver a sustainable programme going forward, support greyhound welfare, and deliver more money into the sport.”

Bower added that the deal supports Entain’s omni-channel strategy for its UK digital brands and emphasises the huge value the operator places on its horse racing and greyhound racing products.

“We have been looking for a long-term deal that delivers benefits to both parties, allowing us to focus on navigating the immediate challenge of Covid, while generating greater value for all,” he continued. “Ladbrokes and Coral are two of the biggest and longest standing investors in, and supporters of horse racing and greyhound racing, and this significant commercial deal with Arena Racing is just further proof of our support for these two great British sports.”

Both horse and greyhound media rights will be produced and distributed to independent bookmakers in the UK via The Racing Partnership (TRP) and into international markets such as Spain via Arena Racing subsidiary Vermantia.

“This deal between Arena Racing and Entain represents a new era of collaboration between the horse and greyhound racing industries and their bookmaker customers,” said Kevin Robertson, managing director of Arena Racing’s media and international division. “We are delighted to have framed this deal to offer long term certainty for both our horse and greyhound racing, as we look to recover from what have been incredibly difficult times for both industries. 

“Importantly, this deal recognises the value for both horse and greyhound racing being sold directly by rightsholders to their key bookmaker customers. Both Arena Racing and Entain are committed to the future of greyhound racing, and under the new JV we will be able to sustain and re-invigorate a sport that has been through significant change over the years. The launch of evening greyhound racing on Sky Sports Racing in February is hopefully the first of many new initiatives to promote and enhance the sport.”

Shares in Entain plc (LSE:ENT) were trading 1.96 per cent lower at 1,522.50 pence per share in London Friday morning.

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