Over the course of nearly four years and more than 200 episodes, Gamble On has established itself as the leading gaming industry podcast, delivering news and analysis as well as interviews with the most influential names in gambling every week.
Episode 202, posted July 21, 2022, features an interview with Alex Kane, the founder and CEO of Sporttrade. Bringing a day-trading-style approach to sports gambling, Sporttrade will be the first regulated sportsbook of its kind when it launches in New Jersey — ideally, Kane says, by the start of football season.
Kane said the idea for a sports betting exchange came about when he was in college and made a longshot bet on a golfer who was 1000/1, saw that golfer drop to 10/1 mid-tournament, and had no option to sell the bet and profit before the wager ultimately became worth $0.
“I was in the finance program and I’d learned about options trading and I’d learned about this concept of buying an out-of-the-money option and then watching its value change and always being able to sell it,” Kane said. “And I thought to myself, ‘Okay, this is inevitable. Someone’s going to create an app that allows you to trade on the probability of events to occur, much like you trade on everything else.’ I don’t think it’s a new idea. I just think that no one’s really done it for the American audience.”
Listen to “202: FanDuel TV plans, horse racing roundup, betting exchanges with Sporttrade CEO Alex Kane” on Spreaker.
Kane’s money quotes
As Kane sees it, Sporttrade offers “a more approachable way” to get into sports betting. “The price is the probability,” he explained. “You don’t have to learn what -150 or -185 is. It’s more like, ‘Wait, this is just like trading on everything else.’”
In this week’s featured “Gamble On” clip, @sporttrade_app founder @a_kane47 talks about how his mom won a quick $5 on her very first sports bet after @StephenCurry30 drained a 3. pic.twitter.com/7lqUcFe8Vr
— US Bets (@US_Bets) July 29, 2022
Kane on the shortcomings of other sportsbook apps: “The market is so inundated by products that all look the same. I saw a recent report for bettors in Ontario, and their No. 1 gripe for sportsbooks was the UI/UX. I mean, if you use an app like Instagram or Robinhood or Coinbase or Uber or Lyft, there’s a certain experience you get as a customer — there’s no loading screens, it’s not glitchy, it’s natively built. And then you try a sports betting app, and it’s like, Oh man. Really?”
Kane on how soon Sporttrade will be available in other states: “The honest answer from us is: We have to nail New Jersey. I think this is a very new concept. It’s an interesting hypothesis as you juxtapose it against the FanDuel-DraftKings methodology. And we want to prove that this works. We want to prove that we bring in new customers to this space … and that we can convert that market at a cost way lower than our competitors. I think we’re going to do that. And I think once we’re able to do that, it’s going to allow us to grow our business.”
Podcast hosts Eric Raskin and John Brennan discussed reports of FanDuel planning to rebrand the horse racing network TVG as a hybrid horse racing and sports betting channel called FanDuel TV. “I don’t think even the most diehard railbird is watching TVG 24/7 — at least I hope not — so, there’s room for other programming there, I would think,” Brennan said. “I think it’s good for horse racing to be linked in any way at all with sports betting.”
That wasn’t the only horse racing news the podcast covered. After Cyberknife won the Haskell Stakes last weekend, owner Al Gold used some adult language in a live post-race interview on CNBC. “I realize CNBC would rather not have the F-word said on air,” Raskin noted. “But how many of the people watching CNBC and watching the Haskell Stakes are under the age of 10 or so? So, to me, this is basically 100 percent amusing and 0 percent troubling.”
In other horse racing news, New Jersey Assemblyman Ronald Dancer, a lifelong champion of the industry, died Saturday, leaving a notable legacy. “It’s the end of a wondrous pairing in Trenton. You had 73-year-old Republican Ronald Dancer, and you still have 81-year-old Democrat Ralph Caputo,” Brennan said. “They served on New Jersey’s Assembly Gaming Committee together for almost 15 years. … It was a match made in heaven.”
Will Kansas have sports betting up and running in time for the start of NFL season, as officials in the state hope to? Probably not. But they’re still progressing rapidly compared to some other states, as Raskin observed: “I certainly admire Kansas’ efforts to move quickly, even if September 8 is kind of a pipe dream. But if I was in Maryland or Ohio, I would be pissed that I’m missing part or all of this NFL season — maybe not quite as pissed as [Gov.] Larry Hogan, but pissed just the same. At least Kansas is trying.”
Closing thoughts: Brennan wrapped up the podcast with an invitation to listeners to send him comments and insights at [email protected] — especially if they hear the Gamble On hosts talking about a topic in which they as audience members have more expertise than Brennan and Raskin. “We want the whole story,” Brennan emphasized.
Image courtesy of Sporttrade