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NetEnt’s board of directors has pushed for its shareholders to support a public offer to buy the company, made by live casino giants Evolution Gaming.
The Swedish provider has offered to buy NetEnt for 19.6 billion SEK.
The suggested share purchasing of 79.93 kr per share represents a premium of 43% over NetEnt’s closing price on Tuesday.
A mutual press release was published by Evolution Gaming and NetEnt’s board on Wednesday morning.
It stated that the offer is dependent upon 90% of the NetEnt shares being purchased by Evolution and that shareholders who control up to 21.02% of all shares had already agreed to accept the offer, while other top shareholders had “expressed that they intend to undertake to accept the offer”.
An official offer document will be published on 14th August and will expire on 25th October.
The merger is predicted to result in annual cost savings of approximately €30m, compared to the combined cost basis of both parties as of the first quarter the year.
This includes the cost savings of approximately SEK 150m which NetEnt already has disclosed. These are expected to be fully realised during 2021.
Jens von Bahr, Chairman of Evolution, said: “This strategic deal marks a significant step towards Evolution’s long-term vision of becoming the global market leader in the online casino industry.
“The combination of Evolution’s strong offering in Live Casino with NetEnt’s leading position in online slots will result in a world-class portfolio of online games that will enable us to serve a growing customer base.
He added: “Furthermore, NetEnt’s established US positioning combined with Evolution’s existing US studios and first-to-regulated-market strategy will put us in a favourable position to capitalise on the on-going regulation in North America.”
Mathias Hedlund, Chairman of NetEnt, also commented: “Recently, NetEnt has vastly improved its tech and product development capabilities and thereby its growth prospects and at the same time reaching a strong position within the US states that have opened up for online casino.
“With this deal, there are unique possibilities to shape a leading global B2B provider of online casino, taking advantage of the market development with continued digitalisation and strong growth, especially in North America.
“Evolution’s position within Live Casino combined with NetEnt’s position within online slots will create a company well-positioned to take significant market shares. Through this transaction, a new chapter in the development of more entertaining online casino begins, in the best interest of players, operators, employees and shareholders.”