Friday September 28,2012 : HRADF BEGINS TENDER PROCESS FOR SALE OF OPAP SHARE
Expression of Interest deadline October 19, 2012
The Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund S.A. (HRADF) launched an international public tender process for the sale of its 33 percent shareholding in one of Europe's biggest-listed gambling company's, Hellenic Football Prognostics Organisation S.A. (OPAP), this week.
Potential investors have been invited to submit an "expression of interest" to participate in the privatisation process which will be conducted in two phases, although HRADF said it retains the right to introduce additional intermediary phases of non-binding offers.
The first phase of the process involves the submission via e-mail of an expression of interest by October 19, 2012 16h00 GMT. Once candidates are selected based on the first phase documentation they will be invited to submit binding offers during the second phase of the Tender.
The fund has appointed The National Bank of Greece SA, and Deutsche Bank AG's London Branch as financial advisers. Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP and Karatzas & Partners Law Firm are acting as legal advisers.
Yiannis Emiris, HRADF’s chief executive officer said: "Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund is accelerating the pace of implementation of a comprehensive plan to restart the Greek economy. The program aims to attract new capital investment, create new jobs and open up Greek markets to competition. The complete privatization of OPAP will be carried out transparently, rapidly and with efficiency in order to achieve that aim.”
Earlier this month, the Greek Finance Ministry entered into a new tax agreement with the European Commission. Under the terms of the agreement, OPAP will apply a flat 10 percent gaming tax on player winnings across online and terrestrial and will itself be subject to a 30 percent tax on gross earnings.
Greek Government officials said at the time that taxes had to be brought in line with European competitors prior to the expected privatisation of the Greek gambling monopoly and follows complaints from industry rivals on Greece's current tax regime which was seen to favour OPAP.
Tender information documentation can be viewed at: http://www.hradf.com/uploads/files/20120927-eoi-opap-en.pdf