New IPO For Playtech Founder
Monday March 10,2014 : PLAYTECH FOUNDER PLANS A NEW I.P.O.
This time it's a digital wallet product from Sagi's SafeCharge company.
Teddy Sagi, the Israeli businessman and billionaire who founded Playtech, and recently sold off a chunk of his stock in that company has a new product lined up for a $100 million I.P.O. in London, according to a report in the Financial Times over the weekend.
The entrepreneur’s latest project is a digital wallet branded SafeCharge, in which Sagi owns the controlling 90 percent stock.
The product has obvious synergy with online gambling, but has applications in other e-commerce sectors as well. The company claims it has the ability to process gambling bets at high speed of 300 transactions per second, and with virtually zero downtime.
SafeCharge will list on the AIM today (Monday) creating a free float of about 30 percent and diluting Sagi’s stake to around 63 percent, the FT reports, noting that after floating SafeCharge's market capitalisation would be in the region of GBP 210 million – GBP 230 million.
Announcements from the company reveal that SafeCharge processed $5 billion in transactions last year and its revenues were $43.1 million, up 31.4 percent on 2012, with EBITDA of $11.2 million. SafeCharge is forecasting 2014 revenues of $61.2 million and adjusted EBITDA of $18.1 million.
The FT notes that the company has obtained “principal” status with MasterCard and has applied for similar status with Visa, enabling it to act as an acquirer for clients as well as being their payment provider.
Forty-year-old Sagi has seen his investment in Playtech soar as the online gambling group developed into an industry leader and FTSE 250 firm that is now worth around GBP 2.4 billion.
Last week, he cashed in a 15.4 percent stake to pocket GBP 326 million, retaining a 33.6 percent stake in the gambling group.
Founded by present CEO David Avgi (39) in 2006, SafeCharge predicts that revenues from sports betting will grow to up to 45 percent of overall sales, while the proportion of revenues from the UK would increase to up to 52 percent of all markets.
“We are also planning to be very focused in the Asian market, with some acquisitions,” he said.
The chairman of the company is another Playtech veteran – former chairman Roger Withers.