Disney is considering entering the sports betting market. The company has great potential to create new opportunities for Disney fans who are passionate about gambling, but will also have an effect on traditional sportsbooks.
Disney is considering getting into the sports betting business. The company has been in talks with multiple major sports leagues, including the NFL and MLB.
Through its movies and theme parks, The Walt Disney Company has assiduously refined, polished, and preserved its image as a family-oriented enterprise for decades. Gambling was prohibited, as was even the appearance of impropriety.
Disney seems to be altering its tune, according to a piece in the Orange County (Calif.) Register by Robert Niles.
Through its ownership of ESPN and the network’s plethora of television and radio programs, website and podcasts, among other sports-related media, the Mouse is reportedly exploring investing in sports betting. The ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Walt Disney World hosts sports events ranging from childhood to professional levels.
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According to Niles, Disney CEO Bob Chapek remarked on last month’s earnings call, “As we follow the customer, we have to really explore going into gambling in a greater and bigger manner, and ESPN provides a fantastic platform for this.”
Disney has long distanced itself from gambling, to the point that, as Niles points out, it has actively opposed the construction of hotel-casinos near Walt Disney World in Orlando. It also refuses to allow casinos on its Disney Cruise Line ships, despite the fact that casinos are a popular feature on cruise ships.
In fact, as Niles recounted in a personal tale, he attempted to check NCAA men’s basketball tournament results on his phone while visiting WDW few years ago.
Because it featured “gambling material,” the site was prohibited.
ESPN.com was the website, which shows how serious The Walt Disney Company was about betting.
However, it is now 2021, and gambling has not only gotten more widespread, particularly among young folks, but it has also become major money. Sports betting has been allowed in an increasing number of jurisdictions, both in brick-and-mortar and online formats. Legalized sports betting has grown into a $131 billion yearly market in the United States, according to a research published by Zion Market Research in September of this year.
Even cruise ships have added sportsbooks to their onboard casinos, allowing passengers to gamble on games.
Chapek said that the corporation has done its due diligence to see if entering the casino market will jeopardize its pristine image.
“As a firm, we have certain worries about our capacity to enter into (gambling) without having a brand withdrawal, but I can assure you that that is not the case,” Chapek added. “When you have a betting component, it really increases the ESPN brand, and it has no influence on the Disney brand.”
It’s also not that far away. ESPN is trying to license its name to big sports betting organizations for at least $3 billion over many years, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The “espn sports betting” is a company that has been in the business of sports betting for over 50 years. Disney is considering getting into the business as well, with ESPN being one of its main sources of revenue.
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