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Centrebet ready to be bought out?

Could Con Kafataris and family, majority owners of Centrebet, be ready to sell up and get out of the bookmaking business? This report seems to think so:

Centrebet keen to join forces

BOOKMAKER Centrebet has confirmed it is looking to buy a competitor or be taken over after its surging share price drew a speeding ticket from the stock exchange.

The ASX yesterday asked Centrebet to explain a 21 per cent increase in its share price -- from $1.32 at close of trade last Wednesday to a high of $1.60 during trade yesterday.

...

Several potential buyers are reported to be circling Centrebet, with controlling shareholders the Kafataris family said to be willing to sell their 60 per cent stake if the price is right.

...

Centrebet has reportedly been eyeing some of the industry's smaller players, while global operator Ladbrokes is said have considered making a bid for Centrebet.

Centrebet shares closed yesterday up 8.57 per cent at $1.54.



Interesting developments. Centrebet can't get a lot bigger in Australia, they wouldn't gain much by buying a small firm there, and I don't see Con as an individual who wants to head abroad - if they did buy abroad, it would be positioning for an even bigger sale price if they were taken over.

Sportingbet and Paddy Power were the first UK/Irish bookmakers to spread their wings to Australia, it won't be a surprise to see the likes of Ladbrokes or William Hill to follow suit now that the Australian TAB retail monopolies are set to be broken in the next few years...

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