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Catena Media is preparing to launch sports betting affiliation activities in Kansas in early September, after the US state announced its go-live date for legal sports betting.

Kansas Governor Laura Kelly last week gave the go-ahead for sports betting operators to start receiving bets on mobile platforms from 1 September, with an official launch on 8 September, the day the 2022 NFL season opens.

Barstool Sportsbook, BetMGM, Caesars, DraftKings and FanDuel are among the operators set to launch on or around the go-live date. Together, they make up more than 80% of the national US sports betting market by handle.

Catena Media is one of a few big players in affiliate marketing for online sports betting and casino in North America, and is already offering pre-launch offers for operators in Kansas.

To date, the group has rolled out operations in 19 states, although 20% year-on-year growth in the firm’s North American segment failed to offset significant headwinds in other markets in Q2 2022.

The business has seen continued rapid growth in the region, however. In 2021, full-year revenue surged 116% in North America, and this year has continued strongly, with a revenue increase of 28% in the first six months from €34.6m to €44.4m, as the region accounted for a 60% share of group revenue. In July, year-on-year revenue in North America increased by 33%.

Dustin Gouker, Catena Media vice president of North America overseeing content, commented: “Our strong portfolio of national and regional sites puts us in a solid position ahead of the huge customer acquisition period we see when any new state launches sports betting.

“We are excited about this next wave of regulated legal online sports betting in the US,” he added.

Catena Media has detailed plans in place to enter other US states once they launch regulated sports betting markets.

These include Ohio, which is due to legalise sports betting on 1 January 2023, in addition to Maryland and Massachusetts, which are also expected to open their sports betting markets in 2023.

Catena Media VP Dustin Gouker: “Our strong portfolio of national and regional sites puts us in a solid position ahead of the huge customer acquisition period we see when any new state launches sports betting.”

The four states have a combined population of 27.9 million, meaning together they have more potential customers for Catena than New York, the affiliate’s largest single state market.

Ohio is the seventh most populous state in the US, with 11.8 million inhabitants. Massachusetts has around 7 million inhabitants, making it similar in size to Arizona, where Catena Media successfully launched sports betting affiliate operations in September 2021. Maryland’s population stands at 6.2 million.

Kansas, with a population of 2.9 million, will be the fourth state or province to open for online sports betting or casino in North America this year, after New York and Louisiana opened their sportsbook markets in January and Ontario, the largest province in Canada, launched its regulated online sports betting and iGaming market in April.

Up to a dozen operators are expected to go live in the regulated Kansas market, including many of Catena Media’s top partners.

In Kansas, Ohio, Maryland and Massachusetts, Catena Media will leverage its national reach and leading sports betting brands in the pre-launch period. Those brands include LegalSportsReport.com, TheLines.com, Lineups.com and GamingToday.com.

The group also has regional sites in place to help maximise affiliation opportunities in each market.

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