Saturday May 12, 2012 : GALA CORAL SOLD FOR GBP 205 MILL
Quick agreement following a return to the negotiating table
Rank Group plc execs and their counterparts at Gala Coral have quickly reached agreement on the acquisition of the latter gambling group for GBP205 million, after returning to the negotiating table earlier this week .
Only months earlier Rank had walked away from the deal, saying it had ended talks to buy Gala's casino business as the terms of the proposed deal were not sufficiently beneficial.
The Reuters news agency reported Saturday that the deal will make Rank, which is 74.5 percent-controlled by Malaysia's Guoco Group, Britain's biggest land casino operator and includes 23 UK casinos and 3 non-operating licences, but excludes casinos in Dundee and Gibraltar and the non-operating licence for the City of Westminster in Central London.
The sale is expected to complete in September 2012, a Gala spokesman said, and is conditional upon the approval of Rank shareholders and the receipt of UK merger control clearance.
"This transaction will crystallise significant value for our shareholders and debt investors," said Carl Leaver, chief executive of Gala Coral, which is controlled by a largely private equity shareholder base comprising of 21 different investors and has recently seen tough financial times.