Flutter Entertainment announced Monday it has appointed Amy Howe as interim CEO of FanDuel Group in a shakeup that will delay FanDuel IPO by another year. Meanwhile a search for a permanent CEO is underway.
Howe – also president of FanDuel – replaces existing CEO Matt King, who will formally step back this Friday. The outgoing CEO had announced in May he would leave the nation’s top digital sportsbook. King will reportedly join Fanatics, a sports e-commerce group.
The crucial appointment comes amid reports from Flutter Entertainment – a parent company of FanDuel – that it is delaying a public listing of FanDuel in the United States.
IPO Could Be Delayed Until 2022
Several reasons could be responsible for the delay in FanDuel’s initial public offering (IPO), which Flutter could postpone until 2022, according to the reports from The Telegraph.
However, Flutter did not comment on the exact reason for delaying the IPO.
The Irish company’s ongoing arbitration with Fox Corp could also be one of the reasons for the IPO delay. In April Fox had filed a suit against Flutter in connection to exercising its option to acquire an 18.6% stake in FanDuel.
A FanDuel IPO was pegged at around $35 billion in March, but valuations have been decreasing since. However, the New York-based FanDuel continues to lead the US market share and has even extended its lead recently during the time of King.
King’s Departure Will Affect the Timing of US Listing
King has been with the sportsbook giant since 2014 and became CEO in Nov. 2017. The outgoing CEO announced May 12 that he was leaving the company.
“Matt leaves the business in a position of real strength,” said Flutter CEO Peter Jackson.
While wishing the departing CEO, Jackson said the interim appointment of Amy would support the major focus on growing the business and retaining FanDuel’s number one position in the US market.
The Irish group addressed the possible US listing, saying “the Flutter Board has been assessing the potential merits of listing a small stake in FanDuel in the US. Whilst Matt’s departure will affect the timing of any potential US listing…” a statement from the company said.
From the outset, as a daily fantasy sports (DFS) operator, FanDuel has emerged as the nation’s top online sports betting and gaming entity. But rival groups – which have been going public in the past two years – have seen share prices increase.
Who’s Amy Howe?
Howe joined the nation’s top sportsbook in February from Live Nation Entertainment, where she was serving as a global chief operating officer of Ticketmaster. Before that, Howe was a partner at McKinsey, a management consulting firm.
As FanDuel president, she was responsible for the commercial aspect of the company. Now she will add to the interim CEO duties to her current role. She will oversee the company’s operational, product, marketing units as well as legal and regulatory aspects of the business.
Howe said she planned to build on the momentum across the business:
“I’m confident that our unique advantages in product innovation, marketing, operational brilliance, and huge market access will enable us to flourish as digital gaming grows across the country,” Howe said.
In April, the parent group had announced that if it decides to offer a FanDuel IPO (sometime in the future), it will not include FOX Bet and PokerStars.
In Dec. 2020, Flutter announced it entered into a conditional deal with a group of private equity investors to purchase an additional 37.2% stake in the FanDuel, raising the Irish company’s stake to 95% in the top sports betting operator in the US.