Skip to main content

William Hill to take over Sportingbet?

Been a while since I've written anything on industry developments, and was reminded of that on the weekend - so expect an industry update soon, but this was worthy of a post on its own.

UK betting giant William Hill is reported to being seriously considering taking over internet betting rival Sportingbet. The online specialists have long been seen as a potential acquisition target and haven't done much to scare rivals off. Hills aren't the only potential suitors though, they have a potential co-bidder in GVC.

William Hill considers joint takeover of Sportingbet

William Hill is considering a joint takeover of online rival Sportingbet that would see it cherry pick the Guernsey-based firm's lucrative Australian operations and possibly its business in Spain.

Sportingbet, shirt sponsors of Wolverhampton Wanderers football club, had last year been in lengthy takeover discussions with William Hill's closest competitor Ladbrokes. A deal could not be thrashed out, however, because of legal concerns about Sportingbet's activities in unregulated markets.

Traditional high street bookmakers are racing to expand their online businesses to keep pace with liberalising markets around the world and technologic advances that are transforming the range of products offered to sports betting punters.

Shares in Sportingbet, which have been rising in recent months, closed up 7.25p at 51p following an announcement from William Hill on Wednesday. This values the business at £330m.

Sportingbet's Australian business accounts for about half of the group's revenues and the lion's share of profits. Spain – a newly regulated online market – represents a further 14% of revenues. Other important territories include Greece, Germany and the UK.



It's a bizarre strategy from William Hill - they were serious pursuers of Centrebet not that long ago, but opted out because of issues with restricting Australian customers over issues with in-play betting regulations and their casino & poker products. Along came Sportingbet to buy Centrebet. Sportingbet have already managed conforming with Australian regulations as their antipodean operation runs relatively independently of the UK business... and then William Hill went and closed all Australian customer accounts anyway so they don't break any laws and risk their licence applications in Nevada.

Or is it a shrewd strategy? It might cost them a little bit more, but if someone else has done most of the due diligence work for them..... You may remember that Paddy Power took over IAS by default when they purchased Sportsbet a couple of years ago. Rumours of unrest in the Sportsbet office abound - the Irish beancounters have taken over, traders might as well be kids off the street with no idea, opinions are a thing of the past...

Comments

  1. How will this affect Aus customers?

    ReplyDelete
  2. you never can tell Shaun, but given the success of the Australian part of Sportingbet, you'd hope they'd leave it alone as much as possible

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Thanks for your comments, but if you're a spammer, you've just wasted your time - it won't get posted.

Popular posts from this blog

lay the field - my favourite racing strategy

Dabbling with laying the field in-running at various prices today, not just one price, but several in the same race. Got several matched in the previous race at Brighton, then this race came along at Nottingham. Such a long straight at Nottingham makes punters often over-react and think the finish line is closer than it actually is. As you can see by the number of bets matched, there was plenty of volatility in this in-play market. It's rare you'll get a complete wipe-out with one horse getting matched at all levels, but it can happen, so don't give yourself too much risk...

Henry VIII Novices’ Chase

It's not just about the Tingle Creek tomorrow at Sandown, there's a Grade 1 Novice Chase amongst the rather decent supporting card. Lining up for the preview is astute NH enthusiast Sam Tribe, @samtribe87.

---------------------

Racing Post Henry VIII Novices’ Chase
Grade 1 Chase, 2 Miles
Sandown 13:50
Likely going Soft, Good to Soft in places


With doubts concerning the fitness of last year’s Queen Mother Chase winner Sire De Grugy and of the two mile chase king Sprinter Sacre (despite bullish remarks from Henderson) there is a chance for another to step into the limelight. Both have won the feature race of the day, The Tingle Creek Chase and that will more than likely throw a few into the hat. However, I have chosen to take a look at the Henry VIII chase, which was changed to a grade 1 in 2011 and has been won by some nice prospects in the past (Somersby and Al Ferof to name but a few). Let’s hope that a potential Champion Chase contender of the future will feature in this …

Kentucky Derby preview

It's America's big day of racing, where 90% of them will be there to be seen and most won't have a clue what difference Churchill Downs Inc's latest takeout hike does to shaft them on every bet placed. Throw in the standard arguments about race-day medication in the US and the recent New York Times/PETA expose on yesterday's Oaks-winning trainer Steve Asmussen, and racing in North America could be in better health.

Still, it's one of the elite races and great occasions of the world, and stepping up to the plate is Jon da Silva again, @creamontop, with his preview in a very American style. (No I don't understand Brisnet figures either...)

------------------------------

The Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum Brands

They say you should avoid food additive E-numbers which you can’t with Yum Brands…

Yum! Brands, Inc. or Yum! is a United States-based Fortune 500 corporation. Yum! operates or licenses Taco Bell, KFC, Pizza Hut, and WingStreet restaurants worldwid…