theScore looks to become operator leader

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An eSports player setupFor years, theScore built itself as one of the most popular sports apps in Canada by providing sports news and scores to plenty of interested and engaged users. In fact, theScore even built a following across the border to the south in the United States. In September, though, the company transitioned from being just a media company providing information to offer a mobile sportsbook. Dubbed theScore Bet, the company opened an online sportsbook in the state of New Jersey last month, hoping to widen their stream of revenue and enter a very lucrative market. The hope is that if Canada legalizes sports betting in the future, the company will be prepared to capitalize. TheScore’s CEO, John Levy, recently explained the company’s move into a new industry.

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theScore’s first transition

Back in 2014, theScore made their first transition as a company. That year, Levy said the company sold off its television assets to Rogers, leading the company to become a 100% mobile business. That’s when the company’s app got very serious and started to take hold with people.

The company had always done well in Canada, but according to Levy, theScore started noticing they were getting loads of downloads from the United States. That told them that the market in the USA was prime for the taking, and that if they expanded in the future, they could expect a significant audience in America, too.

Between 2014 and 2018, theScore grew to be the second most popular app dedicated to sports in the entirety of North America. The only company that was ahead of them was the sports behemoth, ESPN. In total, Levy said theScore gained roughly 4-5 million users per month on average through the app — with 65% of that coming from the U.S.

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Why the move?

In the last few years, the popularity of sports betting began to rise quite substantially, even as the practice of gambling on sports was — for the most part — illegal or unobtainable in Canada and the United States. But theScore realized that they needed to keep their eye on developments, as most people who liked their app also liked betting on sports.

When the U.S. Supreme Court overturned a law in 2018 that previously banned sports betting nationwide, theScore knew there would be opportunities for them to capitalize.

But theScore didn’t jump into the waters right away once U.S. states started legalizing sports gambling. Instead, the company crafted an in-depth business plan so they wouldn’t simply throw huge amounts of money into the market without knowing they were prepared, Levy said.

Ultimately, theScore wants to not just capitalize on extra revenue in the short-term, but to become one of the leaders in the sports information and gambling market for a long time to come — in as many markets as possible.

The company started in New Jersey, which was one of the most aggressive states fighting for the legalization of sports betting. The laws in that state rival very closely to Nevada, which has for years had a U.S. monopoly on sports betting with Reno and Las Vegas.

Other markets for theScore

As theScore is based in Canada, it would only be natural for them to want to enter the Canadian sports gambling market should the practice ever be legalized and regulated here. With their sports betting app in action in New Jersey now, it gives the company time to work out kinks and refine their product before it becomes legal in Canada.

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