Entain Eyes William Hill’s Non-US Playing Arm as New Acquisition Goal


Playing powerhouse Entain is mulling making a bid for William Hill’s non-US belongings which the British bookmaker’s new proprietor, Caesars Leisure Inc., is seeking to offload.

In a current interview, Entain’s CEO, Jette Nygaard-Andersen, mentioned that they plan to take a look at William Hill’s UK and European operations and probably desk a proposal for these.

William Hill’s non-US enterprise features a community of betting retailers throughout the UK in addition to UK and worldwide on-line playing operations. Caesars acquired William Hill final month in a £2.9 billion deal.

The on line casino operator mentioned that it could concentrate on rising the bookmaker’s US unit and would promote the remaining inside 12 months to pay down $2 billion in debt. William Hill’s non-US operations accounted for over 80% of the corporate’s gross sales in 2020.

Bidding for the British bookmaker’s belongings is anticipated to kick off throughout the subsequent two weeks. And Entain is a possible participant in a heated bidding battle.

Ms. Nygaard-Andersen, who stepped in as Entain’s high government this previous January, mentioned that they’re “taking a look at the whole lot, so we’re actually additionally taking a look at whether or not this could possibly be an fascinating alternative.”

The playing operator itself was an acquisition goal late final yr and early in 2021. US on line casino operator MGM Resorts Worldwide tabled a proposal for Entain in December and raised it to $11 billion in January, however the European agency rejected it as too low.

Different Potential Bidders

Entain owns the Ladbrokes and Coral manufacturers within the UK, which mixed handle the nation’s largest chain of betting retailers. William Hill itself operates hundreds of retail wagering places across the UK and the acquisition of those would enhance Entain’s present 40% share within the nation’s retail market considerably.

Nevertheless, a deal of this type might face heavy scrutiny and supreme ban from UK competitors authorities.

Entain is just not the one firm to have not too long ago expressed curiosity in bidding for a portion of William Hill’s enterprise.

Final October, Itai Pazner, the CEO of on-line playing operator 888 Holdings, mentioned they had been doubtlessly within the legacy bookmaker. It’s unknown whether or not the corporate maintains this place greater than six months later.

US personal fairness big Apollo International Administration, which misplaced out to Caesars on the acquisition of William Hill, has too mentioned it was involved in shopping for at the very least a few of the firm. Many imagine it’s the front-runner within the race for the bookmaker’s non-US belongings.

William Hill is just not the one acquisition goal Entain has been eyeing not too long ago. Late final month, the corporate made a revised A$3.5 billion provide for Australian playing operator Tabcorp’s wagering and media arm.

It was in April once more when Entain bought Swedish on-line on line casino and betting group Enlabs, which boasts a big presence within the Baltic area.

Supply: Ladbrokes Guardian Goes From Prey to Hunter in On line casino-Merger Growth, Bloomberg, Might 19, 2021

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