UK – 888 earmarks early 2022 to complete purchase of William Hill’s non-US businessBy William - 3 December 2021
888 has reported ‘strong progress’ towards the completion of purchasing William Hill International.
All mandatory antitrust and gaming regulatory clearances received whilst shareholder circular and prospectus are expected to be issued in early 2022, with a shareholder vote to follow.
Completion is now expected to occur in Q1 2022, subject to satisfaction of remaining conditions. 888 expects to raise approximately £500m of gross proceeds by issuing new equity via a capital raise, which is currently expected to occur prior to the completion.
The integration planning is ‘progressing well’, with Guy Cohen appointed SVP, Director of Integration, to work alongside senior counterparts from William Hill
Completion is also conditional upon the Financial Conduct Authority’s approval of the re-admission of the ordinary shares of 888 to the premium listing segment of the Official List, and the London Stock Exchange’s approval of the re-admission to trading on the main market for listed securities, as well as the completion of a re-organisation of the William Hill group to separate the US and non-US businesses of William Hill.
Itai Pazner, CEO of 888, surmised: “This transaction will create one of the world’s leading online betting and gaming groups with superior scale, leading technology, increased diversification, and a platform for strong growth, supported by a portfolio of iconic brands.
“The appointment of Guy Cohen to the critical role of SVP, Director of Integration also strengthens our leadership and commitment to this important process, as we look to leverage the significant expertise and talent from both businesses to benefit the combined group.
“I’m delighted that we have now checked off a number of important milestones towards completion of the acquisition. Given the strong progress we have made, we now expect the transaction to complete in the first quarter of 2022 and are excited about the opportunities ahead of us as we combine two powerful and complementary businesses.”