After Seven Years as CEO, Erika Nardini Steps Down from Barstool Sports

After seven years as CEO, Erika Ayers Badan has announced her resignation from Barstool Sports. She joined the company in 2016 under the ownership of the Chernin Group and played a key role in navigating the company through various ownership changes, including a sale to Penn Entertainment for $550 million and then back to founder Dave Portnoy.

In her farewell message to Barstool staffers, Badan described the past two years under Penn Entertainment’s control as a “balancing act” and an “exercise in futility”, according to Variety. She expressed her confidence in Portnoy’s ability to ensure Barstool’s lasting success and emphasized the impact of her working relationship with him.

Under Badan’s leadership, Barstool Sports experienced significant growth, with revenue increasing by 5000% during her tenure. However, her time as CEO was not without controversy, as the company faced criticism for its history of sexist language and objectification of women, as well as the challenges of entering the sports betting business under Penn Entertainment’s ownership.

Following Badan’s departure, Portnoy expressed his gratitude for her contribution on social media, acknowledging her as the perfect fit for the company and highlighting her role in its success. As Barstool Sports enters a new era without Badan at the helm, industry observers are eager to see how Portnoy will lead the company.

Meanwhile, Badan has not disclosed her future plans, stating that she is in the process of figuring out her next steps. Her departure marks a new chapter for both the CEO and the iconic media company she helped shape.