Shareholders at 888 approve the purchase of William Hill from Caesars
888 Shareholders Approve William Hill Acquisition
Shareholders of 888 Holdings have given the green light for the $2.4 billion purchase of William Hill’s non-US assets. The agreement with Caesars Entertainment – which acquired William Hill for $3.5 billion in 2021, has been in the pipeline for several months. Once the deal has been concluded, 888 will own one of the UK’s biggest online and retail gambling bookmakers.
Signing the deal
Lord Mendelsohn, the non-executive chairman of 888 Holdings, said that he expects everything to be finalized at the end of June.
In a statement, Mendelsohn said that they are “delighted with the support of our shareholders” for the proposed purchase of William Hill and wanted to thank them for their constructive engagement as part of the process. He added that they “look forward to completing this transformational acquisition at the end of June” as they seek to create a “global online betting and gaming leader.”
During the 888’s first-quarter earnings call, company CEO Itai Pazner said terms of the initial $3 billion purchase were renegotiated. Pazner said that after revising the transaction terms for William Hill, they are “on track to complete in June.” 888 trades on the London Stock Exchange, and shares are currently trading at $191.40.
Deal eases Debt burden for Caesars Entertainment
Having gotten rid of its European assets, Caesars can use some of the capital to pay down a proportion of its $14.3 billion debt.
Next steps for 888?
888 has claimed that the William Hill purchase represents an omnichannel opportunity in the UK. The sports betting operator has 1,400 betting shops in the UK and operates the online brands Redbet and Mr Green.
888 could become the third-largest publicly-traded online gaming operator globally with the new additions. However, 888 still has some financial details to sort out. In 2021, William Hill’s European business posted a net loss of $281.38 million, despite a year-over-year increase in revenue of 7.3%.
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