Betr, a sports betting and media startup co-founded by Jake Paul and Joey Levy, announced Tuesday that it raised $35 million in Series A2 funding. The funding comes from Roger Ehrenberg (via IA Sports Ventures and Eberg Capital), Fuel Venture Capital, Levy, Paul, and others.
The funding round comes as Betr’s relatively new online sports betting product is making headway across the U.S. Betr is operational in Ohio and Massachusetts, and the product is licensed in Virginia with a launch expected soon. Betr also holds market access in Indiana, and it expects to expand into other states in the near future.
On the media side, Betr dubs itself the “fastest growing sports media brand in the United States,” citing 1.3 billion social media impressions in its first 10 months of operation. The company’s media business focuses on original and short-form content, hoping to engage what Levy calls “the next generation” of sports bettors.
“Betr is poised to change the dynamics of the OSB landscape by moving ‘entertainment’ front and center through compelling content, a superior user experience, and deeper engagement across both major and alternative sports,” Ehrenberg said in a statement. “Sports have a special ability to bring people together, and no company is better positioned to accelerate and benefit from this trend than Betr.”
Expanded sportsbook products coming
The new round of funding will be used for two primary goals, Levy said in an interview with Sports Handle.
First, Betr wants to double down on what’s working well. Levy is excited about Betr Media, believing it’s doing well to not only engage sports fans but also drive users to the gambling product. The company shared that over 20% of Betr Media’s estimated Ohio audience converted to real money customers for Betr Gaming. Expect Betr to continue to add and develop its crew of content creators as it aims to build out its media business.
“We have positioned Betr Media to monetize itself independent of Betr Gaming,” Levy said.
Secondly, Betr is shifting its product strategy.
Betr isn’t leaving behind microbetting offerings (betting on pitch-by-pitch results in a baseball game, for example) that were the inspiration behind the company’s founding, but it does want to add more traditional wagers like pre-game moneyline bets and same-game parlays to its product. Levy says the company has received feedback that users would like to stay on the platform for all their betting needs rather than having to use a different mobile sportsbook for non-live betting needs.
“We think we’re the best at microbetting and product experience, and we’re developing a real brand here, but we just don’t want to give our customers a reason to go elsewhere,” Levy said.
Betr recently acquired the Chameleon platform from FansUnite, which the company says will allow it to launch Version 1 of its complete online sports betting product. The product will include full sportsbook capabilities, not just microbetting options. In the coming months, Betr plans to announce two additional real money gaming verticals.
Levy wants the gaming side of the company to develop into more than just a microbetting platform.
“The biggest learning is just the speed by which we need to get betting market coverage parity with other operators,” Levy said.
Market share battles
In the immediate future, Betr wants to build out its sports betting product and continue targeting the younger demographic of sports fans through its original media coverage. Betr is content working its way up the online sports betting operator market, which has thus far been dominated by FanDuel and DraftKings.
“Short term, we are 100 percent not playing the market share game at all … If we were to play the market share game, we would probably be out of money by now,” Levy said. “If I were an investor in Betr, I would be very skeptical of [a market share focused] strategy.”
Levy does believe Betr can become a market share competitor over time, leaning on a loyal audience created by the media division to drive customers to the gambling side. This positions Betr to keep customer acquisition costs down. There’s optimism within Betr about becoming the go-to sportsbook for casual bettors who might not know a ton about sports wagering but are interested in betting as a form of shared entertainment with friends.
Betr Media won the award for Best Sports Betting Content in the sports media industry at the Hashtag Sports Awards last night. Pretty awesome to win this especially given we only launched our media company 10 months ago. Pumped to continue going to war with the best team in the… pic.twitter.com/9TbHdwWg9J
— Joey Levy (@joeyslevy) June 15, 2023
Betr’s strategy of using a media division to drive customers to a gambling platform isn’t a new idea, as Barstool Sports personalities often drive users to the Barstool Sportsbook. Barstool Sports is well-known for focusing on attracting a younger, male demographic to its platform. BetMGM, DraftKings, and FanDuel, among others, also have in-house content creators and often advertise on sports media podcasts and websites.
Still, Levy believes Betr’s content caters to a young generation of casual bettors and sports fans better than most media outlets, especially traditional media. Coupled with an expanding product line and a focus on user experience, Levy likes where Betr is positioned in a competitive industry.
“I think we win short term with media, and we will ultimately win long term with product,” Levy said.