DraftKings hits a home run with IPO backed by $3.3B merger


DraftKings threw a Hail Mary of an IPO and scored a touchdown.

The fantasy sports firm’s stock price surged on its first day of trading Friday even though the coronavirus pandemic has forced sports leagues to take an extended time out.

DraftKings shares spiked as much as 18.3 percent a day after the company closed a $3.3 billion merger deal that allowed it to trade on the Nasdaq Global Select Market. The company’s shares, listed under the ticker symbol “DKNG,” closed up 10 percent, at $19.35, on Friday.

DraftKings has set up free pools and contests tied to popular TV shows including the viral Netflix series “Tiger King” along with reality programs “Survivor” and “Top Chef,” CEO Jason Robins said. Its customers can also engage with “e-sports” events like simulated NASCAR races and the online video game “League of Legends,” according to Robins.

DraftKings is partly banking its future on its sports-betting business, which includes a sportsbook that’s currently active in New York, New Jersey and six other states. The company aims to expand the business into more states once the virus crisis subsides and lawmakers have the bandwidth to take up sports betting legislation



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