Shareholders for prominent iGaming and sportsbook operator Entain have reportedly rebuffed a takeover offer from American casino behemoth MGM Resorts International rumored to be worth in the region of $11.1 billion.
According to a report from the Bloomberg news service, the investors snubbed the all-share deal even though it represented a 22% premium when compared with Entain’s current market value and would have seen them hold approximately 42% of the newly-combined entity’s issued stock.
The news service reported that MGM Resorts International had proposed awarding Entain backers with 0.6 of its own shares for every stake they held in the London-listed firm, which is responsible for a slew of iGaming brands including Bwin, Gamebookers and SportingBet. The proposal from the Las Vegas-headquartered casino operator purportedly moreover topped an all-cash proposal it made late last year as it looks to secure increased access to the emerging land-based and online sportsbetting market in the United States.
Bloomberg reported that Entain, which was previously known as GVC Holdings until undergoing a November name-change, has partnered with MGM Resorts International since 2018 via the pairs’ Roar Digital enterprise. This subordinate purportedly runs the BetMGM sportsbetting service but has experienced a slow start to life owing to continual disagreements over strategy.
James Wheatcroft from financial services firm Jefferies reportedly told the news service that the most recent takeover proposition from MGM Resorts International had undervalued Entain by around 7% when comparing the target’s business with that of American counterpart DraftKings Incorporated. He purportedly furthermore detailed that the proposal came three months after rival casino operator Caesars Entertainment Incorporated inked a $3.7 billion deal to buy British sportsbetting giant William Hill and a only a few weeks following the $4.2 billion arrangement that saw Flutter Entertainment acquire a further 37.2% stake in FanDuel Group, which now owns iGaming colossus The Stars Group Incorporated.
Wheatcroft reportedly told Bloomberg…
“We think that the market has not yet recognized the upside potential and momentum in Entain’s joint venture.”