The parent company of PokerStars have announced that they have agreed to buy Sky Betting & Gaming ("SBG") from CVC Capital Partners in cash and stock transactions valued at $4.7 bn.
The transaction will be comprised of $3.6 Billion in addition to 37.9 million newly issued common shares based on the closing price of its common stock on April 20. According to The Stars Group, the aquisition will result in “the world’s largest publicly listed online gaming company”
The press release lists multiple operational and financial benefits to the acquistion
Greater revenue diversification and significantly enhanced exposure to sports betting, the world’s largest and fastest growing online gaming segment, as the majority of SBG’s revenues are generated by sports betting.
An increased presence in regulated markets, particularly within the United Kingdom, the world’s largest regulated online gaming market.
The development of sports betting as a second low-cost customer acquisition channel, complementing The Stars Group’s core poker business and enabling more effective cross-sell to players across multiple verticals.
Improved products and technology as a result of the addition of SBG’s innovative casino and sports book offerings, and portfolio of popular mobile apps.
Identified cost synergies of at least $70 million per year.
The press release also notes that the acquisition will diversify the StarsGroup revenue base meaning less reliance on Poker. "On a pro forma basis to include the anticipated acquisitions of SBG, CrownBet and William Hill Australia, the Company’s 2017 revenue mix by product would have been 37% poker, 34% sportsbook and 26% casino "
This is not the first time that the Stars Group have attempted to merge with a large gaming operator. In October 2016 Amaya (who have since changed their name to the Stars Group) were in talks with William Hill for a proposed £4.6bn merger. The merger was later called off after William Hill's largest shareholder came out against the deal.