FanDuel CEO Nigel Eccles is leaving the company almost eight years after he helped to found it and put daily fantasy sports on the worldwide gaming radar. Eccles’ exit comes at a time when the controversial company is both mired in legal battles and, according their own reports, is nearing its first profitable quarter.
Word of Eccles’ departure was broken late Monday night by ESPN.com and came as something of a surprise to observers of the daily fantasy sports industry.
Details concerning the reasons for Eccles’ departure were not readily available and a statement by the company said only that he was looking to, “focus on his next venture.” What that venture involves is anybody’s guess, though some in the gaming media speculated that he would take his talents to the booming e-sports business.
Eccles’ position is currently being filled by Matt King, who served as the company’s Chief Financial Officer from 2014-2016. In his own statement, Eccles had kind words for King saying:
With his strategic vision, range of experiences, and broad skill set, I cannot imagine a better individual to steer FanDuel forward. With tremendous legislative strides in the past two years and the business moving into profitability in (Quarter 4), FanDuel is in a great position.
Profitable or not, anyone at the helm of FanDuel is looking at some pretty big challenges. In particular, the company is fighting for its life across the country as it attempts to convince lawmakers that daily fantasy sports should not be considered a form of gambling.