PUBLIC STATEMENT BY WILLIAM HILL PLC ON TAKEOVER REPORTS
William Hill PLC confirms that over the weekend it received a highly preliminary approach from 888 and Rank regarding a potential combination of the three companies.
The Consortium did not put forward a proposal or set out a position on price, timing, terms, form of consideration or transaction structure.
The Board of William Hill would listen to and consider any proposal which might be forthcoming from the Consortium. However, it is not clear that a combination of William Hill with 888 and Rank will enhance William Hills strategic positioning or deliver superior value to William Hills strategy which is focused on increasing the Groups diversification by growing its digital and international businesses.
As announced on Thursday, the Group will publish its half-year results for the 26 weeks to 28 June 2016 on Friday, 5 August.
As a consequence of the announcement by the Consortium on 24 July 2016, William Hill is now considered to be in an "Offer Period" as defined by the Code. Accordingly, William Hill is required to suspend share buybacks.
In accordance with Rule 2.6(a) of the Code, the Consortium is required, by not later than 5.00 p.m. on 21 August 2016 to either announce a firm intention to make an offer for William Hill in accordance with Rule 2.7 of the Code or announce that it does not intend to make an offer, in which case the announcement will be treated as a statement to which Rule 2.8 of the Code applies. This deadline can be extended with the consent of the Panel in accordance with Rule 2.6(c) of the Code.
This announcement is being made without the approval of the Consortium.
The person responsible for arranging for the release of this announcement on behalf of William Hill is Philip Bowcock (interim William Hill CEO).