Atlanta-Based DFS PrizePicks An Oasis Amid Georgia’s Gambling Desert


Atlanta-Based DFS PrizePicks An Oasis Amid Georgia’s Gambling Desert

As of now, the only venue available for legal Georgia gambling is tethered to a marina in Brunswick. While a five-hour sunset cruise through Brunswick Harbor and into the Atlantic is certainly inviting, it’s serving as an emergency release valve for the pent-up demand for legal gambling options in the state of Georgia.

Daily Fantasy Sports companies are left to scratch the wagering itch for fantasy aficionados and the gambling curious. And one such brand has planted its roots right in the gambling desert of Georgia: Atlanta-based PrizePicks.

Homegrown DFS platform PrizePicks enters crowded, competitive market

It’s no secret that the Georgia DFS marketplace has rapidly expanded in recent years. And with many major sports leagues initiating Daily Fantasy partnerships, its visibility to the casual sports watcher has grown exponentially. High-profile sites like FanDuel and DraftKings are the biggest players in the space. PrizePicks, however, entered the fray with a different mission. Its goal: to provide an engaging DFS platform that doesn’t rely on the traditional salary cap contest model. Instead, DFS contests on PrizePicks are based on prop picks — appealing to a wider potential fanbase.

Maybe you’re confident Stetson Bennett IV will throw for more than four touchdowns in the upcoming game. Or perhaps you have a strong feeling Carlos Alcaraz will win in straight sets. These are the types of games that PrizePicks offers its userbase.

In a recent interview with PlayGeorgia, Steven Kerstein, Head of PrizePicks Company Intelligence & Market Intelligence, spoke on the decision to adopt such a model upon originally entering the Daily Fantasy fray:

“Back in 2017, Adam Wexler, our Founder & CEO, realized that the initial iteration of Daily Fantasy Sports — salary cap — was too cumbersome and too time-consuming for the casual sports fan, and it was too hard for the average Joe to compete against professionals who viewed these contests as their means to putting food on the table.

“Hence, Wexler and our founding team worked on a simpler, more intuitive version of skills-based fantasy sports gaming — one centered solely around player projections.”

Indeed, Daily Fantasy Sports have become hyper-competitive since their inception. PrizePicks is pushing its chips to the center of the table on a userbase that seeks a simpler model when it comes to fantasy games of skill. Kerstein said:

“The PrizePicks DFS platform is all about simplicity and ease-of-use. Rather than needing to tinker with salary cap lineups for hours prior to the start of games, PrizePicks members can simply pick and choose projections of their favorite athletes, from multiple sports, and finalize their entry, in under 60 seconds. Members don’t need to be worried about pre-game injury announcements or missing important news. Once their entry is in, they can sit back, enjoy the game and sweat out their respective projections.”

A pivot to a sportsbook could be on the table — down the line

In the backdrop of Georgia’s barren landscape of current legal gambling options, PrizePicks has tossed a local lifeline to residents looking to add a little extra intrigue to their sports watching experience.

But are even bigger moves potentially in the works? Georgians are anxiously awaiting the 2023 legislative session, where legal sports betting has its next chance of finally becoming a reality.

The pivot from a strict Daily Fantasy Sports platform to a full-service sportsbook appears to be a natural progression for many brands. DFS behemoths DraftKings and FanDuel seamlessly integrated a sportsbook component to their platforms once states began passing appropriate legislation.

It’s a logical step for Daily Fantasy Sports brands. And given the rapidly shifting gambling landscape and ever-increasing demand — it’s a move PrizePicks has been keeping its eye on. Kerstein said:

“At this current time, we are laser focused on creating the best daily fantasy sports experience on the market. Having said this, we certainly are aware of the evolving sports betting landscape across the country. While not in our current plans, we think that in the long-term, we could effectively make a pivot into a sportsbook should we choose given the quality and size of our member base.”

But Georgia’s gambling desert could present unique challenges for a DFS site headquartered in a state where sports gambling is currently outlawed. In the wake of both SB 352 and HB 118 failing — two bills that aimed to formally legalize DFS platforms in the state — it presents an interesting wrinkle for a DFS outlet seeking to add sports betting into the fold.

PrizePicks focuses on product & userbase

As for PrizePicks, Kerstein says its current focus lies in providing a unique and immersive fantasy experience for Georgians and residents of the 29 other states where the platform is live.

“We’re very bullish on both our future and the industry’s outlook – At the end of the day, we are firm believers that consumers should have as many options to enjoy sports as they desire — across the spectrum whether that be sports betting, fantasy sports, NFTs, other collectibles, etc. We think that DFS in general will continue to become a more immersive, social experience where enthusiasts will not be satisfied in playing contests in isolation, but through connecting with others like them.

As such, at PrizePicks, we are focused on creating the most engaging platform where members can not only make entries on our platform, but they can engage with fellow fantasy enthusiasts on our Discord Channel 24/7/365 to root on their picks. At the end of the day, the most successful companies in the space will not only build the product, but the community around the product. That is what we’re trying to do at PrizePicks.”

In a crowded DFS marketplace, Georgia-based PrizePicks seeks to simplify the fantasy experience for users of all skill levels. Future decisions by the Georgia legislature will ultimately dictate many of the company’s moves down the line.

In the meantime, PrizePicks has already made good on providing Georgia residents with a homegrown Daily Fantasy option to enjoy.