William Hill Plc and GVC has proposed a takeover offer of $564.9 million takeover to online gambling operator Sportingbet and the company has rejected William Hill’s offer. Sportingbet officials stated that the offer significantly undervalued the business as well as the future prospects.
Sportingbet was created back in 1997 and in that time, the company has grown to become a top provider of online gambling options from sportsbooks to casino sites, online poker and virtual games. The company has over 2.5 million customers who are located in 200 different companies which includes Australia, Spain and the United Kingdom. Many have speculated that the company’s presence in Australia is why William Hill has made a bid to take over the company. William Hill withdrew from Australia on June 4th and this makes the acquisition very interesting for the company.
Lyndsay Wright, the head of investor relations at William Hill, commented: “Ninety-two per cent of our turnover is from the UK so we’re absolutely looking at expanding internationally, but only regulated markets.”
GVC is also involved in the bid and they are interested in Sportingbet’s ‘grey’ unregulated markets. Just this past October, GVC purchased the unregulated Turkish option of Sportingbet. Andy Mclver, CEO of Sportingbet explained: “We used to operate a scatter gun approach where we would operate in a country until the regulatory picture became clearer…Our goal [now] is to be as regulated as possible and it was just a case of when we reached that tipping point.”
Sportingbet currently has a share price of 52.74 and William Hill had proposed a bid of 52.5p per share. Analysts in the gaming industry have estimated that by mid October, the offer for Sporting bet will increase to over 60p per share which will push the offer over £400 million.
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