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A summary of the most exciting news in soccer marketing. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop shop.

  • USLThe United Soccer League (USL) announced a partnership with WSC Sports, the leader in AI-powered sports video content, to automate and simplify USL’s video creation capabilities. USL will be able to create automated video highlights for more than 500 games of the regular season and playoff games. This places the USL on the same level as other WSC Sports clients that include the National Basketball Association, FIBA, Turner Sports and Cricket Australia.
  • Canadian Premier League has granted a conditional club for Vancouver Island. The club will begin to play in 2019, upon the completion of a lease agreement at Westhills Stadium in Langford.
  • Univision Deportes has made deals with Heineken, KFC, Nissan, and Walmart as sponsors for its World Cup coverage content, which will include reporting and analysis of the month-long tournament.
  • Adidas will be outfitting 12 teams in the upcoming World Cup, over Nike’s 10 gear sponsorships, according to REUTERS. While team deals are important for sales of football jerseys, “more critical for sales of boots is the sponsorship of top players.” According to REUTERS data, Nike expects 60% of all players heading to Russia to wear its boots.

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  • Twitter released a blog post sharing new data on which of the World Cup’s teams are the most mentioned around the globe over the past month. These are the top five: 1. Argentina. 2. Japan. 3. France. 4. England. 5. Spain.
  • CONMEBOL.comMP & Silva has made a formal offer to hold the media rights for CONMEBOL’s Copa America 2019 edition until June 13. The sales tender process will be open to broadcasters, digital platforms and media companies that operate in the United States territory and internationally and divided into two packages: the right to exploit the media rights in the United States in the Spanish language; and the right to exploit the media rights in the United States in the English language.
  • FOX Sports has made a deal with adidas as the presenting sponsor of the full company streaming effort across all digital platforms for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia. Coca-Cola is sponsoring the short-form 90 in 90 match highlights, one of the top-performing FOX Sports digital offerings, as well as joining adidas as a co-sponsor of Team Channels.
  • FanDuel is launching World Soccer Pick’em, presented by GameCredits. This marks the company’s first fully integrated fantasy US product for a global sporting event. Soccer fans will have access to a wide range of fantasy contests for the World Cup. FanDuel’s World Soccer Pick’em is available starting today, June 7th on FanDuel.com and on the FanDuel app.

What:Time Warner and Google participated in a US$275 million round of funding in startup FanDuel, led by venture-capital firm KKR and Time Warner Investments, together with Turner Sports. Existing investors Shamrock Capital, NBC Sports Ventures, Comcast Ventures, Bullpen Capital, Pentech Ventures and Piton Capital also participated.
Why it matters: The round brings New York-based FanDuel to US$363 million raised to date. Even though FanDuel is currently not profitable, the one-day fantasy sports operator claims paid active users have grown 300% from a year ago.

JjapYDOo_400x400Time Warner and Google have  participated in a US$275 million round of funding in startup FanDuel. Led by venture-capital firm KKR and Time Warner Investments, together with Turner Sports, the round brings New York-based FanDuel to US$363 million raised to date.

In addition, several NFL and NBA team owners participated in the funding round along with previous investors NBC Sports Ventures, Comcast Ventures, Shamrock Capital, Bullpen Capital, Pentech Ventures and Piton Capital.

Fantasy-sports gaming, in which players compete with virtual teams and players for real cash and prizes, is a booming business.

Fantasy-sports gaming, in which players compete with virtual teams and players for real cash and prizes, is a booming business. In 2014 U.S. and Canadian fans spent an estimated US$15 billion on fantasy sports, according to the Fantasy Sports Trade Assn. ESPN last month inked a pact with DraftKings, a FanDuel competitor, under which DraftKings will be its exclusive daily-fantasy sports partner.Investment bank Mesa Global, recently acquired by Houlihan Lokey, advised FanDuel in the transaction.

FanDuel, based in New York City, was founded in 2009. The company offers multiple single-day game contests for the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, and college football and basketball teams.The company announced this news on the heels of hiring an experienced team of over 40 developers based in Orlando, Florida focused exclusively on sports and mobile gaming and finalizing exclusive, multiyear partnerships with 13 NBA teams and 16 NFL teams. Mesa Global, which was recently acquired by Houlihan Lokey, served as FanDuel’s investment banker.