News Corp Steps Closer to Australian Gambling Market

News Corp steps ever closer to launching its sports betting operations in Australia. Learn more about the upcoming new company.

Media mogul Rupert Murdoch is all set to enter the Australian gambling market with News Corp. Murdoch’s News Corp operates newspapers, digital media, and television brands but has its eye on the lucrative sports betting market.

News Corp is teaming up with renowned Australian gambling expert Matthew Tripp. Tripp will serve as the new company’s chief executive. Tripp is one of Australia’s most successful bookmakers. He built Sportsbet into Australia’s second-largest bookmaker behind only TAB. In addition, Tripp established BetEasy before selling it to The Stars Group.

Industry insiders predicted Murdoch would become FoxBet for the new venture but those predictions are proven false. Indeed, Murdoch’s Fox Corp registered the FoxBet trademark in Australia in October 2020. However, the partnership with Tripp and Las Vegas-based Tekkorp will use a different brand. Media reports suggest BetR is the working title of the new entity.

When Is The News Corp Betting Venture Launching?

Murdoch is no stranger to the gambling world. He launched FoxBet in 2019 with The Stars Group taking a 5% stake. Tekkorp, a company partnering News Corp, owns a 13% stake in ASX-listed BetMakers. BetMakers launched an ambitious takeover bid of Tabcorp last year, but ultimately failed. It offered $4 billion for TAB, following a $3.5 billion Entain Plc bid.

Sources close to Murdoch revealed the company’s sports editorial staff are working on May 2022 as a launch date. News Corp has an enormous media reach, so will shake up Australia’s sports betting industry. It not only owns news companies the Daily Telegraph and Herald Sun, but holds 60% of Foxtel. The pay TV provider Foxtel broadcasts AFL, NRL, and Australian cricket. Expect these sports to feature heavily when the new betting site opens for business.

Insiders suggest the end of August is the most likely month for the new company launch. This is in time for the start of the popular horse racing season.

Tripp Not The Only Australian Involved

Tripp is the most prominent Aussie involved in this new venture but he is not the only one. Andrew Menz formerly acted as CEO of BetEasy then CCO or Sportsbet when the two companies merged. Menz left his Sportsbet post last May, fuelling speculation of him joining this News Corp venture.

Aussie entrepreneur Matthew Davey is also heavily involved. Davey runs Tekkorp, a private investment group that owns 13% of BetMakers. Tripp invested $25 million in BetMakers in February. While BetMakers does not have an equity share of the new company, it is providing technology platforms for News Corp.

Why The Interest in the Australian Market?

Murdoch, Tripp, and company are successful businessmen driven by one thing: making money. The Aussie sports betting market gives them the chance to make a lot of money in both the short and long term. Almost 35% of Australian adults participate in gambling, which is a hell of a lot of potential customers.

Sportsbet has a 50% market share on these shores. It collected some $15.6 billion in wagers during 2021, despite COVID-related restrictions. This means the Australian betting market is worth $31.2 billion annually, a figure that continually increases.

Studies show every Australian between the ages of 18 and 49 spends, on average, $775 per month on sports betting. It does not take a genius to work out that is a lot of potential revenue. The News Corp reach is massive so it expects to grab plenty of market share from the get go.

Market analysts in the United States see this as a huge opportunity for Murdoch and News Corp. They assigned a US$33.12 per share potential price target for the company, almost 53% higher than current levels. News Corp’s shares remain relatively stable but underwent an 8.3% decline over the past six months.