Innovations in Stats Perform's new data deal for English and Scottish leagues
By Susan Lingeswaran
Stats Perform, the international sports data and technology provider, has today announced a new deal with Football DataCo, the UK company jointly owned by English soccer’s top-tier Premier League and second-tier English Football League, and Scotland’s Scottish Professional Football League, to collect and distribute event data from matches.
The exclusive partnership, the length of which has not been disclosed, covers data for broadcast, media and fantasy purposes and official player market data only for betting.
As the leagues' official statistics partner, Stats Perform will distribute player tracking data to rights-holding broadcasters to offer greater insight of matches, plus AI-powered official 'Insight Data' with "never-before-seen patterns and understanding" produced in partnership with FDC and data analytics specialists Second Spectrum via an innovation called FDC Data Labs.
Stats Perform will also provide official player market data to licensed sportsbooks and daily fantasy operators to power pre-game and in-play betting on player statistics, including shots, passes and tackles.
FDC told Sportcal the deal will complement its existing partnership with Genius Sports, the UK-based sports data technology company, which is its official data supplier to the betting sector.
The new deal follows on from FDC's previous three-year agreement with Perform Group, the Europe-based B2B data and betting operation, before the latter merged with US sports data company Stats to become Stats Perform in July 2019.
That tie-up involved Perform’s Opta and RunningBall operating as the official media and betting data partners of the English and Scottish leagues overseen by FDC until the end of the 2018-19 season.
Under its new contract, Stats Perform will collect and distribute data from over 6,000 matches per season from the Premier League, Premier League 2, U18 Premier League, EFL Championship, EFL League One, EFL League Two and Scottish Premiership.
Alex Rice, Stats Perform chief rights officer, said: “Millions of English and Scottish football fans and bettors have enjoyed trusted media, broadcast, fantasy and betting experiences powered by Stats Perform’s Opta data for the past seven years.
“We are honoured that our investment in collecting and distributing the fastest, most accurate detailed event data with the utmost professionalism has again been recognised by Football DataCo, and are excited to use our trusted data as the foundation to drive even deeper connections to some of the world’s greatest teams and players, through our FDC Data Labs partnership.”
Adrian Ford, the general manager of FDC, added: “Extending our partnership with Stats Perform was an obvious choice. The Opta data brand is strong and the business has a deep understanding of football, vital factors for our leagues who want the best and most trusted data.
“Stats Perform will build on these strong foundations and continue to drive innovation through our FDC Labs partnership, using data to tell new stories for fans who have an appetite for greater insight into the beautiful game.”
The new rights to the English and Scottish leagues boost Stats Perform's media and betting soccer data portfolio, which already includes Spain's LaLiga, France's Ligue 1, North America's Major League Soccer and South America's Copa Libertadores.
The Premier League and EFL Championship have now resumed their seasons, after a three-month delay caused by the coronavirus pandemic, but the English lower leagues and Scottish leagues were curtailed, with the exception of playoffs to decide some of the promotion places.
In May 2019, Genius won a multi-year contract to become FDC's official and exclusive data supplier to the betting sector from the start of this season.
However, in March, Sportradar, the international sports data firm, commenced legal action against Genius and FDC, claiming that the system that had been introduced was anti-competitive.
Companies can sub-license official data from Genius Sports but Sportradar wanted to be able to collect its own data from matches, and, in a letter before action sent at the start of the season, accused its rival and FDC of "aggressively targeting" anyone else doing so.