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Barstool Sports to be wholly owned by Penn Entertainment by next year

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Barstool Sports, a controversial sports media outlet founded by David Portnoy 18 years ago, will soon be wholly owned by Penn Entertainment Inc.

Penn said in filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that it will exercise its right to acquire the remaining shares of Barstool Sports that it does not own. The company said it will complete the acquisition by February 2023.

Starting as a print publication in 2003 before becoming a blog, Barstool has grown a large fan base for its racy and sometimes racy coverage of sports and culture. Portnoy, also known to fans as “El Presidente,” has expanded into podcasts and social media.

Penn has owned a 36% stake in Barstool since 2020, buying it for $163 million, and Bloomberg reports it will pay another $387 million for full ownership. increase. The company’s shares were down about 3% as of Thursday morning.

The Berks County-based company, which operates Hollywood Casino York and dozens of casino properties around the country, changed its name from Penn National Gaming earlier this month. The company has launched a Barstool branded sports betting app and has sportsbooks at facilities across the country.

Earlier this month, Penn reported second-quarter revenue of $1.6 billion, up more than 5% from last year.

Penn came under scrutiny from gambling regulators in states such as Nevada and Indiana after an insider reported accusations of violent sexual misconduct against Portnoy. He sued the agency, claiming that his interactions with the five women were consensual.

“There is no settlement. There is no amount they can pay me to set them free,” Portnoy wrote in a February blog post. I never rest.”

» Read more: Philadelphia business backed by Barstool Sports’ Dave Portnoy responds to sexual misconduct allegations against him

Insider Editor-in-Chief Nicholas Carlson defended the report, writing in an editor’s note that the article was “worthy of public interest and reporting.”

“It is wrong to make a consensual sexual encounter violent without first seeking the permission of the sexual partner,” Carlson wrote. He said the sex with Portnoy began consensually, but ended up being more violent and degrading than he had consented to.”

In addition to its digital presence, Barstool has its own channel on Sling TV. He is also the sponsor and exclusive broadcaster of the Arizona Bowl of college football, but last year’s game between Boise State and Central Michigan, where he was canceled due to COVID-19. It also opened its own sports bar, Barstool Sansom Street, in Philadelphia in March.

Barstool isn’t the only media property Penn has acquired. Last year, the company acquired Canada-based sports media outlet TheScore for about $2 billion in cash and stock.

» Read more: Barstool’s new sports bar in Philadelphia has dozens of TVs and lots of controversy