Playtech to close Finalto sale to Gopher in two weeks

abdelaziz Fathi

Playtech, the London-listed gambling software developer, today said it expects to close the divesting of its financial trading division Finalto by mid July 2022.

Gopher Investments acquired Finalto for the sum total of $250 million in cash and the deal now enjoys the full approval of both Playtech’s board and relevant regulators.

Welcoming the announcement, the gaming technology developer asserted last month that the acquisition of its financial trading division is on track to be completed this summer.

On August 18, Playtech shareholders shot down a competitive proposal by a consortium led by Israel’s Barinboim Group, who also tried to purchase the division for $210 million. Nearly 70% of votes cast were against the transaction as shareholders argued the offer undervalues the business.

At the time, however, the firm founded by Teddy Sagi was skeptical about Gopher’s proposal but was forced to go back and engage with its minority shareholder, which owns a 5% stake in Playtech.

Time to focus on gaming

Following a months-long battle, Playtech’s board said it recommends unanimously in favour of the acquisition. The FTSE 250-listed group didn’t change its recommendation, particularly as it didn’t receive interest in Finalto from other potential acquiring parties.

Over the year Playtech has refocused the business, with the sale of Casual and Social Gaming in January and the disposal of Finalto due to complete later this month. The company reported revenue of €1.21 billion for the twelve months through December 2021, which was up 12% compared to the €1.07 billion accrued in the same period in 2020.

The solid performance was driven by B2B online growth, particularly Latin America and Snaitech. Highlighting its success, Playtech said the revenue growth more than offset hurdles encountered as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, the B2B gambling segment grew by 11% to €554.3 million compared to €494.8 million a year earlier.

The gambling technology company has also laid the foundations for its US business to become one of its biggest growth drivers by doubling revenues in the region. Playtech announced new deals that saw the brand expand its US presence to include live casino studios in New Jersey and Michigan.

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