ESPN Bet Logo Causes Pushback From Peer-to-Peer Sports Betting Platform
Posted on: October 24, 2023, 08:37h.
Last updated on: October 24, 2023, 09:57h.
ESPN and Penn Entertainment last week unveiled the logo for their forthcoming sports betting partnership, ESPN Bet.
The companies said the mint-colored logo with ESPN’s lettering in its traditional Stop font was designed to be “welcoming, inclusive, unexpected, and fun.” But an upstart sports betting platform says the logo too closely resembles its own, featuring a mint color and a “B” letter.
— BroThrow (@brothrowbets) October 18, 2023
BroThrow is a peer-to-peer social betting exchange that provides friends and groups an online space to easily keep track of their bets. The company says its platform is the Facebook Marketplace of sports betting, where users can arrange bets among themselves.
“BroThrow users compete directly with each other by ‘throwing’ out bets for friends, groupmates, or the broader community to accept. We seamlessly organize and track your bets and integrate with existing payment apps to make settling up a breeze,” the company explains.
BroThrow is based in Arkansas, where retail and online sports betting is legal. The state sports betting law allows the three brick-and-mortar casinos to partner with an online sportsbook. The three online operators are Betly, Bet Saracen, and Oaklawn Sports.
BroThrow generates revenue by charging a commission on winning bets. The platform also offers BroThrow Pro and BroThrow Pro+ monthly subscriptions.
BroThrow was named a “Rising Star” at the 2023 SBC Awards North America, but the startup remains relatively unknown in the US gaming landscape. The company has fewer than 500 followers on X but claims to be pacing to facilitate $60 million in bets this year.
Brady Sharp, the founder and CEO of the firm, says BroThrow has been on a marketing push to get out its name and brand. Sharp told Sports Handle that the company has attended “all the industry shows,” including the recent Global Gaming Expo (G2E) in Las Vegas.
“I don’t think it was malicious that they came out with a logo that looks remarkably similar to ours, but I do think there’s been plenty of opportunity for someone at ESPN or Penn Entertainment to have seen our logo somewhere,” Sharp said.
Sharp explained that the company doesn’t possess a trademark for the logo but filed a trademark/service mark application with the US Patent and Trademark Office for “BroThrow” in 2019.
ESPN Bet Launch
Penn Entertainment is paying The Walt Disney Company, the controlling parent of ESPN, $1.5 billion over the next 10 years to use the globally known sports brand. Penn made the costly decision to fold on its Barstool Sportsbook after the casino company grew tired of dealing with concerns raised by state gaming regulators over Barstool founder Dave Portnoy’s involvement in the entity.
Penn sold Barstool back to Portnoy for just $1 after spending $500 million to acquire the sports and pop culture network.
Penn believes ESPN is better suited for its long-term sports betting business. The casino operator plans to launch ESPN Bet next month to roll out the online sportsbook in 16 states.
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