Online casino and poker room 888 won a battle to buy Bwin.party Digital Entertainment today by signing the contract for 900 million pounds ($1.4 billion). 888 company, which refused to settle with William Hill in February 2015, has been competing against GVC Holding, who offered 908 million pounds for Bwin shares.
This M&A deal is needed to regulate the growing expenses for taxes and financial management. Executive Chairman of 888 Brian Mattingley told, that the deal can create truly big global online gaming operator. Also he added, that it’s all about scale, because “when you’ve got critical mass you can ride storms and take advantage of opportunities”.
888 offer of 104.09p per share is for 16,4% more than Bwin has in May, before all talks began. Curious fact, that GVC offered 110p per share, but Bwin supported 888 offer by stating they would have less risk and more perspectives for growing company’s management and finance. This deal has been also supported by main shareholder Jason Ader from USA Spring Owl. In his opinion, 888 is not only the best possible buyer, but also the team, which can cooperate for the common profit and least amount of execution for shareholders.
888 is offering casino, poker and sport betting. The company is pretty big on the online gaming market. By this deal, 888 will strong up the sport betting aria and can apply its upgrading technology platform for Bwin. Both companies state that the deal can bring up savings for $70 million per annum by the end of 2018 by taking away duplicated costs and administration fees.
For the moment, 888 has market capitalization of 572 million pounds, while Bwin 848 million, who got in together with PartyGaming in 2011. The combined group will have the revenue of more than $1 billion and be the leading operator in Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom. Bwin shareholders will receive 48.9% of the shares from the new “mix” company.