Streaming Services Illuminate the Need for Novel Tech Integration in the Sports Industry
NEW YORK, April 13, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Traditional sports broadcasters are declining as viewers shift to online streaming services and social media to watch or follow sports. According to a report by the Economist, at the peak in 2012, almost 90% of American homes subscribed to one pay-tv bundle or another. Today, that share has dwindled to about 65%. Additionally, since the NFL is the most-watched live sport in the country, and sport viewership trumps most other tv ratings and ad revenues, that makes the NFL even more important to the fortunes of tv networks, including Fox and CBS (now merged with Viacom). At a time when other entertainment is available at a cheaper price from Netflix and other streaming services, live sport is the only thing left to keep viewers paying for traditional cable and pay-tv. Now, this too is under threat. DGTL Holdings Inc. (TSX-V: DGTL) (OTC: DGTHF), Loop Insights Inc. (TSX-V: MTRX) (OTCQB: RACMF), Scientific Games Corporation (NASDAQ: SGMS), Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ), Esports Entertainment Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: GMBL)
Last month, in several deals collectively worth more than USD 100 Billion, the NFL reached an 11-year rights extension with various TV partners such as Fox, CBS and ESPN, yet also expanded its potential viewership thanks to a new agreement with Amazon Prime Video, which will stream the games on Thursday nights instead of Fox. In the meantime, the digitalization of sports and entertainment emphasizes the need for new technologies such as AI, Software as a Service (SaaS) and data analytics to complement the new streaming world of sports.
DGTL Holdings Inc. (TSX-V: DGTL) (OTCQB: DGTHF) just announced breaking news, “signing of a joint venture partnership with Loop Insights Inc. (MTRX: TSXV; RACMF: OTCQB) (the “Company” or “Loop”), a provider of contactless solutions and artificial intelligence (“AI”) to drive real-time data insights and enhanced customer engagement for retail and event based data tracking applications.
The integration DGTL’s AI-powered social media CMS platform with of Loop’s cutting edge data analytics and digital technologies provides global brand customers with unparalleled ability to drive real time content to fans and consumers. With the combined technologies, DGTL and Loop have an enhanced ability to establish a deeper connection between brands and consumers that can be optimized to create new revenue streams and collaborative projects with Loop’s key brand accounts.
Under the agreement DGTL Holdings and Loop Insights will combine their transformative technologies to onboard real-world consumers and fans at the point of sale in both the physical and digital space. This is a strategic partnership in DGTL building a portfolio platform that delivers on a content to commerce model. Both companies seek to gain access to new users, key brand clients, and revenue streams.
DGTL Holdings CEO Mike Racic stated: ‘Loop Insights’ ability to connect sponsor and brand activations at the transaction level and tie back to their Wallet pass technology provides a valuable data collection and enhancement feature for our clients. The integrated product offering will now be able to provide brands direct access to their customers through the Loop Wallet Pass and deliver real-time campaign performance metrics associated with their advertising campaigns. We look forward to working with Loop Insights to enhance the value of the data we return to our global brand clients.’
Loop Insights CEO Rob Anson stated: ‘Integrating with DGTL Holdings’ leading digital advertising platform will assist and bring incredible value to our existing clients. Loop will also benefit from direct access to major Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) Brands involved in the live sports and entertainment industry. Together with DGTL, Loop is able to close the loop on the digital activations, improving the in-game experience for fans while providing real-time measurement for agencies and CPG brands. This is extremely valuable and creates exciting new revenue opportunities.’
By integrating Loop’s technology with DGTL’s social media CMS platform, Loop and DGTL have effectively closed the loop to provide brands and operators with a complete overview of their customers and operations, for powerful content and analytical insights.”
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Loop Insights Inc. (TSX-V: MTRX) (OTCQB: RACMF) operates in the telecom, casino gaming, sports and entertainment, hospitality, and retail industries, in Canada, the US, the UK, Latin America, Australia, Japan, and Indonesia. Last month the company announced that it has partnered with Data Clymer to provide Loop’s real-time data collection, insights and engagement solutions to Data Clymer’s growing list of clients, including its leading clients in professional sports and live entertainment. Aron Clymer, Founder & CEO of Data Clymer stated, “As a leader in the business intelligence and data space, Data Clymer prides itself in guiding organizations to leverage the full value of their data. We are confident Loop’s products and services will greatly enhance the abilities of our clients in live sports and entertainment as they seek to unify and aggregate their data points to provide a revolutionary in-stadium experience.”
Scientific Games Corporation (NASDAQ: SGMS) and International Game Technology PLC, announced on March 1st, that they have signed a cross-licensing agreement for patents related to cashless slot gaming technologies. Under the agreement, Scientific Games and IGT will be able to offer patented cashless gaming technologies from the companies’ combined portfolios of casino management systems solutions to the U.S. gaming industry. Financial terms of the agreement have not been disclosed. “This cross-licensing agreement provides casino operators access to the gaming industry’s most compelling portfolio of cashless gaming technologies. We have made significant R&D investments over many years to develop this comprehensive suite of intellectual property in the cashless space. It makes revolutionary improvements to the player experience and represents the greatest advancement in cashless payments since the introduction of Ticket-In, Ticket-Out (TITO),” said Renato Ascoli, IGT CEO Global Gaming. “Cashless gaming is here to stay, and this strong portfolio of cashless IP can help casino operators ensure the safety of players by reducing cash handling and points of contact with slot games, while considerably improving casino operating efficiencies.”
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) the NFL and AWS debuted last month the first 5G and mobile edge compute (MEC)-enabled mobile game for fans in-stadium at Super Bowl LV, called NFL Ultra Toss. Fans with the NFL Ticketholder app received a push notification during the second quarter and were able to compete by using their smartphone to virtually toss a football into the back of a virtual pickup truck positioned in the middle of the field. Fans connected to 5G Ultra Wideband in the stands could point their phone’s camera to the middle of the field to see the virtual pickup truck materialize on the field using augmented reality (AR). The interactive AR experience also allowed fans to simultaneously see the live virtual football tosses happening in real-time from other fans, amping up the head-to-head competition.
Esports Entertainment Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: GMBL) reported last month that it has signed a multi-year partnership with the Baltimore Ravens to be the NFL franchise’s esports tournament provider. As part of the multi-year agreement, the Company will operate bi-annual esports tournaments for the Ravens utilizing its Esports Gaming League (“EGL”) platform. “Our esports tournament platform continues to gain strong traction among top-tier professional sports franchises,” said Grant Johnson, CEO of Esports Entertainment Group. “We are delighted to add the Ravens as our latest partner. Our robust tournament platform will help the Ravens strengthen connections with their fans, while providing new avenues for engagement.”
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