barstool sports

Pennsylvania Casino Operator Buys 36% Stake in Barstool Sports

Penn National pays $163 million for a 36% stake in Barstool Sports

Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy
Getty Images

Pennsylvania casino operator Penn National Gaming has acquired a 36% interest in digital sports media company Barstool Sports for $163 million.

As part of the deal, Wyomissing-based Penn National (NASDAQ: PENN) gains exclusive rights to use Barstool’s brand for its online and retail sportsbooks. The deal puts Barstool's valuation at about $450 million.

Barstool Sports is a sports and entertainment company geared toward young men, boasting millions of followers across its social media networks. Barstool Sports has approximately 66 million unique visitors each month, with a mostly Millennial and Generation X audience, the company said in a release. Penn National CEO Jay Snowden said in a statement that Barstool’s brand and “deep roots” in sports betting will help the casino company to attract a new and younger demographic. 

Penn National operates 41 gaming properties across 19 states. The company inked a deal with multiple tech companies in 2019 to bolster its online sports betting presence, as it lags behind other local casino entities.

“Over the last five years, Barstool Sports has brought its audience, creativity and expertise to the biggest sports betting and DFS operators in the country with great results,” said Barstool CEO Erika Nardini. “The chance to combine our content and fans with Penn National's massive footprint, and to develop a unique and compelling omni-channel approach together, was for us a no-brainer.”

Barstool Founder David Portnoy responds to the purchase at PBJ.com.

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