Sportingbet acquires two Danish online bookmakers
Sportingbet Plc ("Sportingbet"), a leading online sports betting and gaming group, today announces that its wholly owned subsidiaries, Sportingbet Holdings Limited ("SHL") and Interactive Sports (C.I.) Limited ("ISCI"), have each entered into a conditional binding agreement to acquire the entire issued share capital of, in the case of SHL, Danbook Limited ("Danbook") and, in the case of ISCI, Scandic Bookmakers Limited ("Scandic"). The aggregate maximum consideration payable for both Danbook and Scandic is £8.5 million.
Danbook and Scandic are both focused on the Danish market, where they offer customers a full range of fixed odds sports betting, casino, poker and games. Denmark has passed regulatory legislation that comes into force on 1 January 2012, with the first licenses due to be issued on 15 December 2011. Sportingbet views this regulatory framework as representing a commercially viable opportunity, and has already applied for a licence. The combination of Danbook and Scandic with the existing Danish businesses of Sportingbet and the recently acquired Centrebet will transform Sportingbet into one of the largest players in the Danish market.
The deal is expected to close early in 2012 following the satisfaction of conditions including the successful award of new Danish gambling licences to both Danbook and Scandic, and the launch of websites compliant with the new Danish regulations. The maximum aggregate consideration payable across both transactions comprises £4 million of cash and £0.5 million of Sportingbet shares payable immediately on closing, with a further £4 million of cash to be paid across both transactions following the successful migration of the businesses of Danbook and Scandic onto the Sportingbet platform.
A number of key individuals within Danbook and Scandic will be retained to provide services to Sportingbet and the enlarged group.
Commenting on the acquisitions, Andrew McIver, Sportingbet Chief Executive, said:
"These acquisitions emphasise Sportingbet's commitment to generating revenue from regulated markets. We have already demonstrated our ability to deliver strong growth in licensed territories such as Australia and we are excited by the opportunity that Denmark represents."