ESPN Bet : 672,000 Downloads in Less Than 72 hours

Written by:
Gilbert Horowitz
Published on:

The numbers are staggering but do provide some sense of what a behemoth ESPN Bet will be in the U.S. sports betting space.


ESPN Bet reached 672,000 downloads in less than 72 hours and was number 1 across all Apple platforms following its Tuesday launch.  The site is a rebrand of Barstool Sportsbook.  It will continue to be operated by Penn National.

Under August’s agreement, Penn’s rights to the ESPN brand will initially run for a decade with the option of extension for another 10 years. In addition to the $1.5 billion licensing deal, Penn also said it would grant ESPN rights worth about $500 million to purchase shares in Penn.

The app will be available for wagering in 17 states to start.  These include Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.

"ESPN and Penn believe they can infiltrate this market," Andrew Brandt, a sports business professor at Villanova University, told CBS MoneyWatch. "They want to make it like one-stop shopping where you go to check the score and there's your betting opinions right there. They think they can offer a better product."

The launch is not without its risks as Penn National has already developed a reputation for restricting players and canceling bets.  More recently, Penn canceled a number of wagers after an event had concluded, claiming a software glitch.

- Gilbert Horowitz,

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