Potential $3 billion float

Scientific Games' lottery business reportedly near Australian IPO

Scientific Games' stand at ICE London 2020.
Reading time 1:22 min
The share sale process would value the lottery unit at about 14 times Ebitda, and could start as early as this week, according to a report by Bloomberg. It would be the largest float in Australia since 2014. The report follows the company's agreement to sell its sports wagering brand OpenBet to Endeavor Group last month.

Las Vegas-based Scientific Games Corp. is reportedly close to launching an Australian initial public offering (IPO) of its global lotteries business that could raise about A$4 billion ($3 billion), according to sources cited by Bloomberg.

At least A$1.3 billion are planned to come from cornerstone investors and the rest from others, with the share sale process, valuing the unit at about 14 times Ebitda, potentially starting as early as this week, the prestigious news agency reported. However, it added that the gaming supplier could decide to pursue an alternative strategic option and there’s no certainty it will proceed with a listing.

Scientific Games in June stated it was exploring divesting its lotteries and sports-betting units via a merger with a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), a sale or a strategic combination with another business, as part of a process to rein in debt. In September, it agreed to sell its sports wagering company OpenBet to Endeavor Group Holdings Inc. for $1.2 billion in cash and stock.

If the share sale by the vendor of state lottery tickets and scratch-off games sold in more than 50 countries effectively takes place, it would be the largest float in Australia since 2014, according to Bloomberg.

The plan for the lotteries unit IPO follows last year’s purchase of billionaire Ronald Perelman’s 34.9% stake in Scientific Games by a group of investors led by Sydney-based Caledonia.

SG's instant games business have a 69% share of the $101 billion U.S. market, according to company presentations obtained by Bloomberg. The company’s retail solutions and systems business in the U.S. dominates about a third of a $184 billion market, and its iLottery business accounts for 13% share of a $26 billion market.

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