PENN Entertainment, the parent company of ESPN Bet announced its third quarter earnings today. According to the report the gaming company generated a revenue of $1.61 billion.

Exciting news, for sports bettors is that ESPN Bet is set to launch on November 14 in all 17 states where PENN has a license pending approval. However it’s important to note that North Carolina will not be included in the launch. Online North Carolina sports betting is scheduled to begin between January 8 and June 14 2024.

In terms of revenue PENN saw a decrease of 0.4% compared to the period last year. From July to September they reported $196.3 million in revenue from their segments primarily consisting of North Carolina sports betting. The company had an EBITDA loss of $50.2 million for the quarter from their segment activity. Overall for Q3 PENN recorded an EBITDAR of $523.4 million with a margin of 36.8%.

The earnings report also mentions signs observed by the company across casinos despite reporting a net income loss of $725 million for Q3 2023 ($4.80 loss, per share).”We saw performance in locations, including our casinos, in Ohio, Kansas, Massachusetts and Missouri ” states the report.

According to PENNs earnings report for the quarter as of September 30 2023 the company has a liquidity of $2.3 billion with $1.3 billion in cash. Its traditional net debt stands at $1.3 billion as of Sep. 30.

From January to September 2023 PENNs revenue reached $4.96 billion showing a 3.1% increase compared to the nine months of 2022. This growth can be directly attributed to the success of North Carolina sports betting apps. The interactive statement shows a gain of $235 million compared to the period in 2022—an increase of 51%.

It is expected that ESPN Bet will be included in North Carolinas sports betting launch in 2024 replacing Barstool Sportsbook which was sold back to founder Dave Portnoy by PENN in August.

During that time ESPN and PENN Entertainment entered into a ten year agreement worth $2 billion for ESPN. In exchange for a payment of $1.5 billion and possibly up to $500 million, in PENN stock options ESPN grants PENN the rights to use its name on an physical sportsbook.

PENN has confirmed that ESPN BET will be powered by their technology platform indicating that the app and online sportsbook will likely share similarities, with the Barstool product. The strength of ESPNs content channels, including television, radio, streaming and the Internet will play a role in promoting ESPN Bet.

In addition to this PENN has mentioned that known ESPN personalities will lend their names and voices to endorse the sports betting app. This move has caught the attention of experts who believe it could pose a challenge to industry leaders like DraftKings and FanDuel.

Recently ESPN Bet released a launch teaser featuring Scott Van Pelt.

The launch of online North Carolina sports betting is on the horizon as regulators make progress in navigating rulemaking and licensing procedures. There’s a possibility that it could go live early as January 2024.

While PENN didn’t mention their plans for launching ESPN Bet in North Carolina in their Q3 earnings report it is expected that ESPN Bet will be available when sports betting becomes operational in the Tar Heel State.

The specifics regarding how PENN can promote ESPN Bet are still undecided. Massachusetts regulators have expressed concerns, about this brand while North Carolina regulators might also establish guidelines to regulate PENN and ESPN Bet. The company mentioned that they have reduced their marketing efforts, in the United States as they get ready to shift their sportsbook to the ESPN BET brand. Users in North Carolina can expect to see promotions for the ESPN Bet North Carolina promo code when the app launches.

✅ Fact Checked on January 27, 2024 by Ken Weaver