Hard Rock Digtial and Playtech enter landmark strategic partnership
March 14, 2023
Playtech, the leading platform, content and services provider to the online gaming industry, is pleased to announce a landmark strategic partnership with Hard Rock Digital (“HRD”), the exclusive, global vehicle for interactive gaming and sports betting for Hard Rock International and Seminole Gaming.
Under the partnership, HRD will license a range of the Company’s proven technology solutions and iGaming content to deliver the authentic experience customers have come to expect across Hard Rock’s global ecosystem of entertainment, hospitality and bricks and mortar casinos. In the U.S. and Canada, HRD’s customers will enjoy a variety of Playtech’s iGaming content offering including market leading slots, RNG and live dealer table games through HRD’s existing proprietary platform and technology offering. These products will also be enjoyed outside of the U.S. and Canada where HRD will also have access to additional software and services solutions from Playtech including its IMS player management platform and certain ancillary services including operational, customer support, payment advisory and marketing services.
The Company will supply its products and services predominantly on a revenue share basis under long-term commercial agreements.
Alongside these commercial arrangements, Playtech has also invested $85 million (c. €80 million) in exchange for a low single digit % minority equity ownership stake in HRD.
The proceeds from Playtech’s investment will predominantly be used to help fund HRD’s continued global expansion. Hard Rock branded online and retail sports betting and iGaming is currently being operated in select U.S. states, as applicable, including Arizona, Indiana, Iowa, New Jersey, Ohio, Tennessee, and Virginia, with the expectation for additional launches in the future. HRD also plans to extend its online sportsbook and iGaming offerings to select international markets over the next several years. Hard Rock’s global brand strength and recognition combined with Playtech’s broad international market knowledge and software and services offering provide an exciting platform for international expansion. Additionally, Hard Rock’s extensive and expanding global operating footprint of cafés, hotels and casinos positions HRD as the only operator with a truly global omni-channel opportunity.
Playtech expects minimal impact from this agreement on its B2B segment results in FY2023. Contribution to B2B revenues is expected to increase in FY2024 and thereafter as HRD continues to increase penetration in established markets and as additional markets come online.
Mor Weizer, Playtech CEO said: “The Playtech team is thrilled to announce our strategic partnership with HRD. Hard Rock International has cemented itself as a marquee name worldwide, not just in gambling, but more widely in entertainment. HRD will combine the strength of this global brand with a proven management team, some of whom we at Playtech have known for many years and believe to be among the strongest in the online gambling industry.
For Playtech, this partnership significantly advances our position in the North American market and is very much in line with our B2B strategy.”
“This partnership will act as an accelerator to Hard Rock Digital’s planned strategic initiative to expand its online gaming offerings to international markets, becoming the first operator with a global omni-channel offering under a singular, irreplaceable brand,” said Jim Allen, Chairman of Hard Rock International and Chairman of the Board of HRD. “This announcement only reinforces our commitment to lead innovation in the gaming industry and expand the ‘Hard Rock’ experience worldwide. We look forward to providing an authentic, digital experience for Hard Rock’s global fan base within a comprehensive, omni-channel offering.”
Founded in 1999 and premium listed on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange, Playtech is a technology leader in the gambling industry with over 7,000 employees across 20 countries.
Playtech is the gambling industry’s leading technology company delivering business intelligence driven gambling software, services, content and platform technology across the industry’s most popular product verticals, including, casino, live casino, sports betting, virtual sports, bingo and poker. It is the pioneer of omni-channel gambling technology through its integrated platform technology, Playtech ONE. Playtech ONE delivers data driven marketing expertise, single wallet functionality, CRM and responsible gambling solutions across one single platform across product verticals and across retail and online.
Playtech partners with and invests in the leading brands in regulated and newly regulated markets to deliver its data driven gambling technology across the retail and online value chain. Playtech provides its technology on a B2B basis to the industry’s leading retail and online operators, land-based casino groups and government sponsored entities such as lotteries. Playtech directly owns and operates Snaitech, the leading sports betting and gaming company in online and retail in Italy.
About Hard Rock®
Hard Rock International (“HRI”) is one of the most globally recognized companies with venues in over 70 countries spanning 265 locations that include owned/licensed or managed Rock Shops®, Live Performance Venues and Cafes. HRI also launched a joint venture named Hard Rock Digital in 2020, an online sportsbook, retail sportsbook and internet gaming platform. Beginning with an Eric Clapton guitar, Hard Rock owns the world’s largest and most valuable collection of authentic music memorabilia at more than 87,000 pieces, which are displayed at its locations around the globe. In 2022, Hard Rock Hotels was honored as the number one brand in Outstanding Guest Satisfaction for the second year in a row among Upper Upscale Hotels in J.D. Power’s North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Study. This designation is the fourth consecutive year the iconic brand has been among top brands in this category. HRI is the first privately-owned gaming company designated U.S. Best Managed Company by Deloitte Private and The Wall Street Journal for the second year. Hard Rock’s recognition by Forbes in the 2023 list of America’s Best Large Employers for the seventh year in a row, stands amongst other accolades by Forbes such as ranking amongst World’s Best Employers, as well as Best Employers for Women, Diversity and New Grads and a Top Large Employer in the Travel & Leisure, Gaming, and Entertainment. In the 2022 Global Gaming Awards, Hard Rock was named Land-Based Operator of the Year for the second time in four years. In 2021, Hard Rock Hotels & Casinos received first place ranking in the Casino Gaming Executive Satisfaction Survey conducted by Bristol Associates Inc. and Spectrum Gaming Group for six of the last seven years. Hard Rock International currently holds investment grades from primary investment rating agencies: S&P Global Ratings (BBB) and Fitch Ratings (BBB). For more information on Hard Rock International, visit www.hardrock.com or shop.hardrock.com.
About Hard Rock Digital
HRD is the exclusive Hard Rock International and Seminole Gaming vehicle for interactive gaming and sports betting on a global basis. Known the world over for its famous cafes, casinos, hotels, and music memorabilia collection, Hard Rock’s legendary hospitality and entertainment serves as our foundation as we build the future of sports betting and internet gaming. Headquartered in Hollywood, Florida, and with offices in Austin, Texas and Atlantic City, New Jersey, HRD is dedicated to creating the best place to play for sports fans and mobile gamers everywhere.