Playtech, a gambling software development firm, has reportedly become the latest London-listed gambling firm to be sought after for takeover as operators strive to grow scale and enter the US market.
Shares of Playtech rose nearly 60% on Tuesday (19th Oct) after Australian gambling giant, Aristocrat announced a £2.7 billion offer for the company.
Aristocrat is giving Playtech shareholders 680p per share, a 58% premium over Friday's closing price. The offer has the support of Playtech's board of directors. The share price increased by 249p to 679p.
Aristocrat's takeover proposal is the fourth offer Playtech has received, but the deal is the first to be publicly disclosed. In April 2021, the Australian firm made an unsolicited approach.
The offer comes as gambling enterprises hurry to capitalize on the deregulated gambling industry in the United States, which is expected to become one of the world's largest betting and gaming marketplaces.
Aristocrat CEO, Trevor Croker, stated that the transaction will create long-term shareholder value by capitalizing on opportunities in the rapidly expanding global online real money gaming (RMG) market as they continue to come up, notably in North America.
Aristocrat's origins can be traced back to the 1950s when it started as a slot machine manufacturer. The firm still produces them, many of which are destined for Las Vegas, but over the last ten years, it has turned itself into an online gambling organization via a series of mergers.
Over half of the firm's income is now generated by selling gaming and betting content and technology to other firms. The company is listed on the Australian stock exchange with a market cap of A$30 billion, employing 6,500 people in over 80 countries.
Playtech, which was formed in 1999, creates white label gaming technology but also has a large consumer-facing presence through its Italian subsidiary Snaitech, which manages online gambling websites and betting shops.