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Paddy Power Bookmaker History and Expansion

Paddy Power is among the world’s most reputable sportsbooks as it has countless registered punters. This site has plenty of great features and that is exactly how it managed to rise to the top of the ranks. Players can wager on tons of sports on their mobile and desktop devices and enjoy a plethora of bonuses that can boost their potential winnings. 

Its story is nothing short but amazing and that is why we wanted to share some light on it. Hence, we will provide you with the full history of this sportsbook and how it managed to rise to the top. Without any further ado, let’s start diving into the details. 

Creation and Entrance in the Market 

As an Irish bookmaker, Paddy Power was established in 1988. It represents the merger of around 40 shops owned by 3 bookmakers: 

  • John Corcoran
  • Stewart Kenny
  • David Power

David Power was one of the inheritors trading under the name of his father, Richard Power. Out of all brands affiliated with the three bookmakers, the Power brand was considered the strongest and most popular, which is why it was decided that the name of the sportsbook should feature it. 

As for “Paddy,” the name and colours are synonymous with the Irish flag and culture, which is why it was chosen as the addition to “Power.” Interestingly enough, David Power’s son is actually named Paddy and is currently the marketing spokesman of the sportsbook. 

During its inception years, Paddy Power mostly focused on horse racing, but as the company started expanding and offering various Paddy Power bonus offers, it breached other markets as well. Its expansion is exactly what we are going to talk about next. 

Paddy Power’s Early Expansion

The company’s share of the off-track betting market in Ireland in 1988 was 3%. However, Paddy Power led a massive expansion strategy which involved the opening of numerous betting shops wherever it could, rather than in prominent locations. 

Paddy Power’s parent company, Power Leisure, was listed on the London Stock Exchange in late-2020 as a way to fund its expansion into the UK. The mission proved to be a massive success as at the end of  2005, Paddy Power ended up operating 45 betting outlets in the UK and 150 more in Ireland. 

In May 2008, it acquired McGranaghan Racing and in doing so, it managed to increase the number of betting shops in Ireland from 150 to 191. One interesting fact about Paddy Power is that it became one of the first bookmakers that started offering punters the chance to bet outside of sports. It also allowed them to bet on politics, especially the US presidential elections

The 2010s Proved to Be The Best for Paddy Power 

In 2010, Paddy Power purchased a majority stake in, an Australian bookmaker. Then, in November 2011, the company reached its biggest success to date as it became Europe’s largest bookmaker by total share value. 

And if that wasn’t enough, Paddy Power made a boss move with one of its biggest rivals in 2015. The company and Betfair finally agreed on terms and merged. The merger was finalized in early 2016 and it was structured as a purchase of Betfair by Paddy Power. The merged company became known as Paddy Power Betfair and of course, a few changes were made. 

The CEO of Paddy Power, Andy McCue, was named as the COO of Paddy Power Betfair. Then, Betfair’s CEO, Breon Corcoran, was named CEO of the combined group. Gary McGann was named the chairman of the combined company.

Paddy Power Today 

These days, Paddy Power continues to dominate the sportsbook market. It is still regarded as one of the most popular and most respected bookmakers. Apart from featuring tons of great offers, including great bonuses and fantastic odds, the company is well-known for its rather unique marketing campaigns, which are known to draw some criticism. 

Proof of the influence of this sportsbook is its Betting Shop Operator of the Year awards by GGA London. Paddy Power managed to secure this prestigious reward two years in a row – first in 2020 and then, in 2021. 

Currently, the company is owned by Flutter Entertainment. Flutter Entertainment is actually the original group that was created by the Paddy Power-Betfair merger.

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