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DraftKings’ Robins urges lower expectations for Canada


Jason Robins, co-founder, chairman and CEO of DraftKings, said that the operator’s launch in Canada has gone “as expected”, as the business had lower expectations compared to the US, in DraftKings’ earnings call for its Q2 results.

DraftKings launched in Ontario in May, mid-way through the quarter, after the market opened in April.

Earlier today, DraftKings reported a year-on-year revenue rise of 57.1% to $466.2m (£387.1m/€458.8m) in its Q2 2022 results.

Jason Park, chief financial officer at DraftKings, said that the operator’s full-year revenue projection had been raised as a result of the quarter’s success.

“We are pleased to be raising our full year revenue outlook to a range of $2.0bn to $2.18bn,” said Park.

The quarter also had a knock-on effect on projected Q3 and Q4 activity. Park said that DraftKings expects $1bn in online sports betting handle in Q3, along with a projection that Q4 will be the best quarter for adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation.

On the results, Robins said he was “proud” to have had a balanced quarter.

“I am very proud of the team for striking great balance in the first half of the year, and also making improvements to our long term cost structure,” said Robins. “We look forward to continuing to balance these objectives.”

Referring to Ontario, Robins said DraftKings had been aware of its expectations in the province and felt positive about its development there.

“Ontario is what we expected,” said Robins. “We feel like we can do well there.”

He added that comparatively, DraftKings never held Canada to the same standards as the US  in terms of the launch.

“We always said we didn’t believe we’d get the same share as in the US. Consistently, we thought it was going to be a slower grind,” he continued. “When US states open up, it’s really more green field. Those are the key differences. With Canada we didn’t have the same expectations as in the US.”

On marketing, Robins said that DraftKings was adaptable in terms of spend in terms of deals.

“A majority of our spend is flexible. We have a number of deals, there are some we may opt out of, but a majority of our spend is flexible and we like it that way.”

The quarter was also customer-focused, said Robins and Park, with particular success in customer engagement and retention.

“We are doubling down on our strategy and cultural approach to customer centricity,” said Robins. “Across the board, we’re seeing really good retention numbers. There’s nothing I can point towards to say one segment is outperforming another one.”

“Responsible gaming remains a focal point for us.”

Park added, “Our customer activity continued to be very robust with no indication that the macroeconomic environment is impacted by engagement.”