The bidding auction for William Hill’s non-US assets is ‘heating up’, according to the hosts on The Big Betting Balagan podcast, who viewed the offer made by German firm Tipico as ‘fairly credible’.
Announced last week, the bid by Germany’s largest betting and gaming operators has reportedly established the company as ‘one of the frontrunners’ in the contest for William Hill’s non-American divisions, put up for sale by new corporate owner Caesars Entertainment.
Commenting on the development, Dan Phillips, Big Betting Balagan Co-Host, CEO at NEL Advisory and Senior Advisor to the Spectrum Gaming Group, agreed that Tipico’s interest was credible, especially with the backing of its majority owner CVC Capital Partners.
“Tipico is quite interesting, because not only are they a decent sized company, but what struck me is that they are backed by CVC, who previously owned Sky Bet before they sold that on to the Flutter group. There is pedigree there, and I thought that was fairly credible.”
Agreeing with Phillips, fellow Co-Host and Chief Executive of Gaming Economics, Lee Richardson, added: “I think it is credible. What wasn’t clear and what will be interesting is whether they will be the so called ‘primary buyer’ where they buy everything, and either run everything themselves or decide to sell parts they don’t want off.
“You could make a case from Tipico’s retail experience that they might be a primary buyer and buy all of those assets and keep all of those assets, and not sell them on.
A range of international betting operators are eyeing up William Hill’s assets, including 888 Holdings, Betfred, Apollo Global, Advent PE, BoyleSports and Kindred Group, although Ladbrokes Coral owner Entain has allegedly withdrawn from the proceedings.
“I thought this was strange, as I thought there would be competition rules in the UK aspect with what William Hill have got for sure,” Richardson remarked.
“The auction is clearly heating up, we’re now in the middle of summer and they always said they wanted this done by the end of the year, so I’m not sure if other auction participants will come out of the woodwork.”