Update: WHO Buy-Out by Will Hill Imminent?


Many speculations emerged this week regarding the Brit bookie firm William Hill plc.'s potential (an as it now seems, likely) buy-out of the 29 percent held by Playtech in their joint venture William Hill Online.

Namely, many sources indicate that the announcement of the buy-out could be expected on Oct. 19, when the company is due to release its Q3 results. The desire to take over the whole operation, which proved to be a massive revenue booster for Will Hill makes sense - only last year WHO contributed over a third of the bookmaker's $441.4 million in profits.

Howeveer, it is not known at present how much William Hill would have to pay for this takeover initiative, but analysts estimate that the price could be anywhere from GBP 225 million to as much as GBP 500 million. In case the two parties cannot reach an agreement, the original agreement includes a provision that envisages that an independent bank should assess the value of the company.

The price paid by Playtech back in 2008 was somewhere in between - the company had to give $319.7 million for its share of WHO, and provide technology as well as staff support.

As for the other Will Hill' acquisition drive, the attempt of takeover of Sportingbet plc in tandem with GVC, the companies have until October 16 to make their firm offeer or withdraw from the takeover competition.

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