Aristocrat Leisure to buy UK gaming software developer Playtech for $2.89 billion
Aristocrat Leisure, an Australian company that offers a range of products and support services to the gaming industry, is making billion-dollars bet to cash in from the American online gambling gold rush
Today, Aristocrat Leisure announced that it would buy Playtech for 2.1 billion pounds ($2.89 billion), offering new growth areas for the gambling machine maker including real money gaming, according to a report from Reuters. Aristocrat Leisure said it would fund the deal with a A$1.3 billion ($964.21 million) equity raising plus new debt and existing cash.
“The business will be ideally positioned to unlock sustainable shareholder value by seizing opportunities in the fast-growing global online RMG segment as they continue to open up, particularly in North America,” Aristocrat Chief Executive Officer Trevor Croker said.
In recent years, a shift to online betting amid the pandemic has caused consolidation in the industry, with UK-based Entain being approached by U.S. fantasy sports company DraftKings last month.
The acquisition of Playtech paves the way for Aristocrat to enter the $US70 billion ($94.4 billion) online “real money gaming” (RMG) industry, which includes real money sports betting and gambling at digital casinos.
“I think that’s the nature of this industry where it is only starting to be regulated, it’s starting to mature at the moment. And that’s why we think entering North America with Playtech is so compelling,” Mr. Croker added.
With operations in 24 countries, Playtech is one of the world’s largest online software gambling suppliers. The company runs the industry’s largest purpose-built live casino facility and develops platforms and content for the gambling industry. Playtech also provides software for 170 online gaming operators in the RMG sector, including sports betting giants such as Bet365, Entain, and Flutter
“We believe the current $US70 billion addressable market has the potential to grow in line with broader consumer, and technology trends, which has only accelerated through COVID. The North American market is forecast to see the strongest growth over the medium term,” he said.