Ladbrokes Coral in £3.9bn takeover talks with bookmaker GVC Holding

Share

The value of this would be determined by reference to the outcome of the current review of gaming machines and its estimated impact on the run-rate profitability of Ladbrokes Coral's United Kingdom business.

GVC, which owns Bwin and Sportingbet among other brands, has proposed a possible takeover offer for the entire issued and to be issued share capital of Ladbrokes.

Shares in Ladbrokes jumped almost 30% on the news during early trading in London.

This is the third time in a 12 months when GVC Holdings has held merger talks with Ladbrokes Coral, which is now one of the largest bookmakers not only in the United Kingdom, but globally as well.

It would see Ladbrokes Coral shareholders own around 46.5% of the combined group and GVC around 53.5%.

Apart from that the two gambling operators also agreed that the current Chief Executive Officer of GVC Holdings - Kenneth Alexander - would assume the CEO role of the combined group in case that a merger agreement is reached.

The review is part of a government crackdown on FOTBs after MPs raised concerns the machines were too addictive and fuelled problem gambling.

Next Huawei Phone Might Have A Triple-Lens 40MP Camera
Now new reports have surfaced online that Huawei may launch a photography-centric smartphone series in the coming weeks. The ads also describe the various features of the camera such as the Pro Night Mode and the Pro AI assist.

The news follows a wave of consolidation in the sector, which is going through a hard shift from high street betting shops to online gambling.

Ladbrokes completed its £2.3bn (€2.6bn) merger with Coral in November a year ago, but it is understood GVC first approached Ladbrokes over a tie-up when it was finalising the deal. GVC shareholders would be entitled to the rest.

Following its so-called triennial review, the government said in October that the maximum stake allowed on FOBTs could be sharply cut over concerns they fuel addiction.

Last month, GVC announced the sale of its Turkish subsidiary, removing a potential obstacle to a deal with Ladbrokes, which had raised this as one sticking point during August's talks. It started a 12-week consultation to consider cutting the stake to between 50 pounds and 2 pounds, from 100 pounds now. "You can only sit and wait for so long". Ladbrokes plc is a British-based betting and gambling company.

Stricter regulation and higher taxation have hit betting shops in recent years and in 2015 prompted Ladbrokes to agree a merger with Coral and Paddy Power to tie-up with Betfair.

"The boards believe that a transaction has the potential to create material shareholder value and that there is a compelling strategic rationale for the possible offer", the two said in the statement. A larger company could have a greater competitive advantage versus sector peers.

Share