4/18/2012 :  BETSSON TO ACQUIRE NORDICBET
 
Private gaming group has three Malta-based subsidiaries
 
The Swedish online gambling group Betsson AB has announced that it is to acquire the Malta-based Nordic Gaming Group and its three sportsbook, casino and poker subsidiaries, NordicBet, Tobet and Triobet.
 
Magnus Silfverberg, CEO and President of Betsson, said in a statement Wednesday: ”Through this transaction, Betsson continues to strengthen its Nordic operations and its leading position amongst the private gaming company alternatives in the Nordic region.
 
"In addition, Betsson’s brand portfolio is strengthened significantly within the betting segment, as NGG receives approximately fifty percent of its revenues from sportsbook operations.”
 
In 2011, NGG increased its revenues by 37 percent, with revenues over the period 1 April 2011- 31 March 2012 amounting to Euro 50 million. At the beginning of 2012, the number of active depositing customers totaled 90,000 and the company has 185 employees.
 
Betsson management is confident that synergies can be achieved, for example through the integration of technology platforms and supplier agreements. As Betsson has a major recruitment need, management believes that the synergies will primarily result in a welcome injection of qualified staff, which can be utilised within other parts of the Betsson group currently undergoing a strong expansion.
 
Betsson is acquiring NGG from a number of individuals, including both the founders of the company, members of management and employees, as well as from external investors.
 
At closing of the transaction, Betsson will pay a purchase price for the operations totalling Euro 65 million, of which Euro 5 million will be paid either in the form of Betsson shares at a historical 10 day average price or in cash, and the remaining Euro 60 million will be paid in cash.
 
The purchase price is equivalent to 5.9 times EBIT during the last 12 months (1 April 2011 – 31 March 2012).
 
In addition to the up-front purchase price, an additional earn out, based on the development of NGG during 2012, may become payable by Betsson.and will amount to a maximum of Euro 20 million. Betsson is entitled to choose to pay any additional purchase price in cash or in Betsson B shares, based on the share price prevailing at the time of such payment.
 
Betsson has secured a two-year external financing of the transaction, amounting to SEK 500 million, which at the current base rate results in an interest rate of approximately 4 percent.
 
Per Hellberg, CEO of NGG, said: ”For NGG, this is an attractive solution as the company can incorporate Betsson’s global strength into its operations and it
strengthens our possibilities to continue to grow rapidly and with good profitability in the Nordic region, the Baltics and Poland.
 
"The two companies have similar cultures, and we foresee a smooth integration, and believe that we can quickly benefit from each other’s strengths.“