17th of October 2012 Author: Glo Wood
William Hill plc and GVC plc have finally found acceptance with the Sportingbet plc. board of directors when upwardly revised offer was made to acquire the entire issued and to be issued share capital of Sportingbet.
The increased proposal values each Sportingbet share at 61.1 pence per share, including the recently announced proposed final dividend of 1.1 pence per share, based on a closing middle-market GVC Holdings share price of 233.5 pence on 15 October 2012.
The Proposal implies a fully diluted equity valuation for Sportingbet of approximately GBP 530 million comprising 48.9 pence in cash, 1.1 pence dividend in cash and 0.0475 new GVC Holdings shares per Sportingbet share.
In reaching the agreement the Board of Sportingbet has confirmed to William Hill and GVC Holdings that if such an offer were to be made, the Board would unanimously recommend it to Sportingbet shareholders, and has agreed to facilitate the making of a formal offer.
William Hill and GVC Holdings were required to either announce a firm intention to make an offer for Sportingbet or step back by 5.00 p.m. 16 October 2012 at the latest. Nevertheless, at the request of Sportingbet, the stock exchange authorities have extended this deadline until 5.00 p.m. on 13 November 2012.
The two companies are cautious about the certainty of the whole operation and reserve the right to make an offer at a level of cash and / or exchange ratio on less favourable terms than set out in the Increased Proposal if:
(i) the Board of Sportingbet agrees and recommends any such change; or
(ii) a third party announces a firm intention to make an offer for Sportingbet.
GVC plc announced that the company is involved in the Sportingbet acquisition with William Hill plc so it has requested a temporary suspension of trading in its ordinary shares which will take effect from 7:30 a.m. Tuesday.
"These discussions are at a preliminary stage and there can be no certainty that they will be concluded successfully. A further announcement will be made in due course," says the announcement.
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