Boston Globe Media Partners is under fire after a lawsuit claims the organization owes Better Collective more than $750,000. Globe Media entered into a deal with the Danish company last year.
The goal was simple: Now that sports betting in Massachusetts is live, Better Collective would provide sports gambling content for Boston.com, which is one of Globe Media’s sites.
But the deal didn’t go as planned, according to the lawsuit.
Here’s a closer look at what happened and what’s next for the Boston Globe’s parent company.
Better Collective’s agreement with Globe Media
Better Collective is a sports gambling media group located in Copenhagen. The group partners with some of the biggest industry names to provide content. Partners include the Action Network, VegasInsider and bettingexpert.com. It also does business with bet365, Betfair, Unibet and FanDuel.
According to the lawsuit, Globe Media reached out to Better Collective to create sports betting content for its site, Boston.com. In August 2022, the two sides agreed on a deal, in anticipation for Massachusetts’ inevitable sports betting legalization.
The deal included a caveat that Better Collective would use its relationships to provide sports betting advertisements from various operators. In turn, Boston.com would include a sports betting section on its site, dedicated to content from Better Collective.
“To induce BC to do business with it and pay it substantial fees, Globe Media held itself out as a willing, reliable, good faith and committed business partner,” Better Collective’s lawsuit says. “As it turned out, Globe Media was the exact opposite.”
PlayMA reached out to the Boston Globe for a statement. Globe Media did not respond to the request for comment.
Where it went wrong
Better Collective’s lawsuit argues that Globe Media failed to hold up its end of the bargain.
According to the lawsuit, there was no marketing on Boston.com prior to the launch, no links on the home page and no search-engine optimization.
“To date, BC paid Globe Media hundreds of thousands of dollars of fees which it did not return, to which it is not entitled, and by which has been unjustly enriched,” the lawsuit says.
The lawsuit claims this breach of contract by Globe Media caused Better Collective to “miss highly lucrative market windows and opportunities,” which resulted in “additional damages.”
Additionally, Better Collective’s lawsuit states that Massachusetts’ gambling advertisement restrictions impacted the agreement.
The lawsuit says that both Globe Media and Better Collective previously agreed to discuss a reduction of any fees owed to the Globe’s parent company by the Danish group. But Massachusetts’ new advertising regulations should have resulted in an updated agreement, Better Collective alleges.
The company tried to reach out to Globe Media in early February to talk.
“Globe Media refused even to discuss any reduction in fees and failed to cure its material breaches of the agreement,” the lawsuit says.
Finally, the lawsuit states that Better Collective believes Globe Media wanted a “more favorable” relationship with DraftKings Massachusetts.
“On information and belief, Globe Media refused to negotiate because it wanted to end its relationship with BC so that it could enter into and/or expand its business relationship with DraftKings on more favorable terms to Globe Media,” the lawsuit says.
What’s next for the Boston Globe?
It’s not planning to sit still.
Last week, Globe Media called the lawsuit “meritless.” In a statement to the Boston Herald, Globe Media claims Better Collective failed its end of the deal, resulting in “significant harm.”
“BGMP intends to file counterclaims and prevail on this meritless suit,” Globe Media told the Herald.