Genius Sports, CFL agree to sports data and global technology partnership to grow fan engagement, extend media reach
NEW YORK, US & LONDON, UK — Genius Sports Limited (NYSE:GENI) (“Genius Sports” or “the Company”), the official data, technology and commercial partner that powers the ecosystem connecting sports, betting and media, announced on Friday a landmark strategic partnership with the Canadian Football League (“CFL” or “the League”), the second largest football league globally with over 100 years of history.
Genius Sports will provide a wide range of technology and services that will enable the CFL to accelerate its growth plans and engage new audiences around the world.
As part of the agreement, Genius Sports will have the exclusive rights to commercialize the CFL’s official data worldwide and video content with sportsbooks in international markets, replicating the global distribution and success of its official betting products for the EPL and NFL, among others. In connection with the partnership, in addition to the official data rights agreement, Genius Sports will acquire a minority stake in CFL Ventures, the new commercial arm of the League, allowing the Company to benefit strategically and financially from the CFL’s growth.
The CFL will be provided with one of the widest and most innovative data ecosystems in world sport, transforming its relationships with fans, sportsbooks, and media in North America and globally. Bringing together its recent acquisitions of Second Spectrum, Spirable, FanHub and Sportzcast, Genius Sports will power the entire CFL digital infrastructure. This will include live broadcast augmentation, advanced data tracking tools, highly targeted and personalized fan engagement solutions, cross-platform streaming capabilities, play-by-play and scoreboard data collection technology, coaching analytics products, and integrity services to safeguard the league.
“Our partnership with Genius Sports has the potential to launch a new era for the CFL,” said Randy Ambrosie, Commissioner of the Canadian Football League. “It provides access to the technology and tools we need to engage our existing fans, and reach new ones, in exciting, innovative and highly customized ways. This goes beyond transforming our marketing. It can redefine our relationship with fans, partners and other key stakeholders, here in Canada and globally.”
“By providing the CFL with an incredible range of sports technology solutions, Genius Sports is setting a new precedent for sports partnerships,” said Mark Locke, CEO of Genius Sports. “Together, we will revolutionize the entire CFL product, delivering truly immersive experiences for their existing fans and attracting new audiences who crave year-round, top-flight football action.”
This partnership will help facilitate the CFL’s growth ambitions, expanding its audience in the U.S., while extending its reach into new international markets. Genius Sports will help the CFL to capitalize on the growth of the North American sports betting market, maximizing revenue and engagement opportunities.
The transaction is expected to become effective in January 2022.
An O’Melveny & Myers LLP team, led by partners Charles Baker and Amy Siegel and counsel Eric Geffner and Rob Catmull together with McCarthy Tetrault LLP, advised Genius Sports on this transformative transaction.