he transaction must be completed before the end of April 2013 and is subject to approval by William Hill shareholders. Earlier, William Hill paid us$ 697.9 million to takeover the Australian and Spanish operations of online gambling company Sportingbet, the deal is scheduled to complete on March 19.
The Playtech acquisition for the agreed price of £424m would represent a multiple of approximately 11.5 times normalised 2012 EBITDA and is to be settled entirely in cash, with Playtech receiving a proportionate share of 2013 profit from William Hill Online up to the date of completion. Playtech holds 29% stake in the William Hill online venture, formed at the end of 2008.
The acquisitions would mark major transformation for William Hill, set up in 1934 and a familiar name on the British high street where it has more than 2,000 betting shops across the country. William Hill has been aiming to strengthen its overseas operations and continue its strong growth in online gambling.
Playtech, a technology and services supplier, said that it would conduct a broad review in order to determine the best use of the proceeds from this transaction, including the potential for further acquisitions, joint ventures and partnerships focussing on regulated markets.
“William Hill Online has consistently delivered strong net revenue growth since it was formed in December 2008. This joint venture has been very successful for both parties and we look forward to continuing our relationship with Playtech as a key software supplier”, said William Hill CEO Ralph Toppong. "Today marks a major milestone for William Hill as we propose taking full control of William Hill Online," Topping added. "This move rounds off a successful 12 months which have seen us take our first steps into the US and, through the pending Sportingbet acquisition, lay the foundations for growth in the attractive Australian market," he added in a statement.
On 28 February 2013, William Hill notified Playtech of its intention to exercise the Call Option in 2013. In the event that William Hill does not duly complete the purchase by 30 April 2013, then William Hill’s right to exercise the Call Option in 2015 will automatically terminate.
Playtech has the right to elect for a portion of the consideration for the Proposed Acquisition to be satisfied in the form of new William Hill Ordinary Shares. As at the date of this announcement, Playtech has indicated to William Hill that it does not intend to take Ordinary Shares and as such William Hill is funding the Proposed Acquisition on that basis. Playtech holds a 29 percent stake in the online venture, formed at the end of 2008.