Entain has announced that it will reduce B2C activity within its Unikrn esports betting division as part of a repositioning of its esports offering.
The gaming giant acquired Unikrn in October 2021 as part of a strategy to strengthen its esports business. Entain subsequently relaunched the brand in December 2022 and laid out plans to launch in more regulated markets around the world.
However, less than 12 months after the relaunch, Entain appears to have slowed down these efforts. In a statement to iGB, Entain says it will reduce direct-to-consumer operations within Unikrn.
“This is to ensure that our business is structured as effectively as possible and that we can best implement our strategy and growth plans,” says Entain.
“Unikrn has developed an industry-leading offering around e-sports betting. We see significant opportunities to leverage these capabilities through our existing global brands.”
Entain did not provide any further details about Unikrn and the future of the division.
Focus on M&A for Entain
The statement comes as Entain completes its latest acquisition as part of an ongoing M&A strategy.
Last week, Entain completed its acquisition of sports modeling, forecasting and analytics specialist Angstrom Sports. The deal is worth up to £203.0m (€234.7m/$247.2m), with Entain paying an initial £81.0m.
Other recent acquisitions include SuperSport in Croatia, which was acquired by Entain at the end of 2022. Entain also recently acquired Polish sports betting operator STS Holding.
Meanwhile, Entain has signed a number of follow-on M&A deals, including Angstrom last week.
In June, Entain bought Tiidal Gaming NZ, owner of esports betting developer Sportsflare, for C$13.2 million. This meant adding a range of betting products optimized for esports alongside Unikrn.
Earlier this year, Adam Greenblatt, who has led the BetMGM business since its founding in 2018, spoke to iGB about the importance of technology and product-focused deals in the industry.