Is DraftKings Still King? Top Sports, Business News – May 15

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Here are the stories shaping sports and business on Friday, May 15.

$4 Billion on the Line for MLB Owners

During an appearance with Anderson Cooper on CNN, Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred said the coronavirus impact on the MLB is devastating. 

Manfred said the outbreak came at the worst possible time as the season was about to start just a few weeks after the NBA, NHL, and NCAA all postponed or canceled their seasons.

The MLB commissioner told CNN that while baseball is a big business they are a "seasonal business. And unfortunately this crisis began at kind of a low point for us in terms of revenue. We hadn't quite started our season yet. And if we don't play a season the losses for the owners could approach $4 billion."

On Thursday, MLB team owners agreed on a shortened 82 game season.and are proposing a 50-50 advertising revenue split with their players. However, the MLB Player Association has not signed off on this yet.

Read more: Rays SP Blake Snell Won't Play Under MLB's Proposed Revenue Split

A Coronavirus Update

There are nearly 4.5 million cases of the virus worldwide, with over 304,000 deaths. The U.S. has 1.4 million of those cases, with over 86,000 deaths. Russia has over 262,000 cases. And the U.K. has over 238,000 cases and 34,000 fatalities.

Retail sales dropped a record 16.4% in April, almost doubling March's 8.7% decline, which was the steepest month-on-month drop since 1992 when record-keeping began. They were expected to have a 12% drop.

Even sales at the gasoline pumps registered declines, reflected in a 16.2% drop in core retail sales, which strips out more volatile auto and gas sales.

Read more: Sorrento Shares Double on Claim of a Potential Breakthrough Virus Drug

DraftKings Earnings Report

Sports gambling revenues for the month of April are trickling in from around the country and, as expected without sports, the revenues are small compared to this time last year.

New Jersey revenue on sports gambling for the month of April fell 68% according to the Garden State’s Attorney General’s office. This, despite sportsbooks seeing five times as many bets on the NFL Draft as compared to 2019.

DraftKings is one of the biggest sportsbooks in New Jersey and is growing across the country. Its CEO, Jason Robbins, is making an appearance tonight on Mad Money with a friend of the program, Jim Cramer.

In its first earnings report as a public company, DraftKings posted a first-quarter loss that was wider than a year ago as the sports world came to a full stop amid the coronavirus pandemic, halting sports-betting activity with it.

DraftKings posted a loss of $68.7 million, or 18 cents a share, vs. a loss of $29.5 million, or 8 cents a share, in the comparable year-ago quarter. Revenue rose to $88.5 million from $68 million.

Analysts polled by FactSet were expecting a loss of 15 cents a share on sales of $104.4 million. Losses from operations more than doubled to $66.1 million from $30.2 million.

Read more: DraftKings Posts First-Quarter Loss as Covid-19 Puts Sports on Hold

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