Proving it’s a responsible gambling operator appears to have paid off for William Hill as it is now the official betting partner of the NHL.
Announced on March 28, the paid partnership builds on the company’s existing ties with hockey and will see it enjoy exposure across multiple channels. Although the terms of the deal haven’t been disclosed, it’s understood cross-branding opportunities will play a central part in the relationship.
New Innovations to Benefit William Hill and NHL
As well as coverage during NHL games and broadcasts, William Hill will be able to leverage opportunities connected to the sport’s top events.
What that will look like in reality is unclear. However, with in-play betting and other stats-driven innovations making their way into the US market, William Hill customers may get exclusive access to special odds and offers.
Commenting on the partnership, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said the move complemented the league’s “innovative yet practical approach” to sports betting. Expanding on that, William Hill US CEO Joe Asher said fan engagement would be at the heart of the deal.
“Partnering with William Hill US, a leader in both the sportsbook and mobile betting marketplace, provides a tremendous opportunity to further fan engagement,” Asher said in a press statement.
In becoming the official betting partner of the NHL, William Hill has not only increased its presence in the US but the sport of ice hockey. Prior to the recent announcement, it had secured partnerships with the Vegas Golden Knights and the New Jersey Devils.
Responsible Approach Leads to Important Partnership
Alongside its growing network of partners, the operator recently donated $50,000 to the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey (CCGNJ). At the time, the deal was seen as a gesture of goodwill to help the state’s responsible gaming efforts.
However, what it’s also managed to do is portray gaming operators in a better light. Although sports betting regulation is moving across the US, opposition remains.
By forging links with a gambling awareness organization, William Hill has shown that customer welfare is a priority. In the wider context, this move will help the industry as a whole.
The immediate impact, however, seems to be that it’s won William Hill some friends in high places. Although the donation alone won’t have sealed the deal, partnering with a company committed to responsible gambling is something the NHL will have taken into consideration. In that respect, other operators looking to crack the US market may now opt to invest in similar schemes, something that would improve the industry as a whole.