888 Holdings Seals Deal To Acquire bwin.party For $1.4 Billion
For the last few months bwin.party has captured the attention of many suitors looking to acquire them. We reported on GVC Holdings showing interest along with Amaya Gaming and 888.
The news coming out today is that 888 have sealed a deal to acquire bwin.party for $1.4 billion. 888 won the bid war despite a joint bid from GVC and Amaya Gaming for 110 pence a share which would have slightly exceeded 888’s offer.
For 888 the acquisition of bwin.party will enable them to increase their operations at a time when there is increased taxes and regulation. Analyst Nick Batram at Peel Hunt believe the deal is a good one for 888 as they have secured bwin.party for a reasonable price and efficient structure.
This latest deal is just one of the many in the last 2 years which include Amaya Gaming purchasing PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker for $4.9 billion last year. The acquisition according to analyst Karl Burns is likely to be significantly value accretive for shareholders. The combined group is likely to be highly cash generative, potentially allowing for future shareholder returns.”
Executive chairman for 888, Brian Mattingley commented on the deal,” This is a transformational opportunity for 888 in the consolidating online gaming industry, which is expected to grow significantly over the coming years. The Enlarged Group will benefit from significantly enhanced scale, an improved product offering as well as significant cost and revenue synergies.”
Bwin.party chairman Philip Yea gave his side of the deal,” A year ago we set out to explore industry consolidation opportunities whilst working to improve our core business. We have made substantial progress on both counts and our announcement today marks the first step in a new phase in our short history. Bringing our two groups together will generate substantial financial synergies for the benefit of both sets of shareholders and create a strong player with the breadth of product, brands and geographic coverage to grow faster than either business would be able to achieve stand-alone.”