William Hill to Acquire Mr Green Casino for about £241m

Businessmen shake hands to conclude deal

William Hill is pushing to complete its purchase of the Mr Green group as soon as possible. This means that more than 100 jobs are going to be under review by the new owners.

These jobs are in London, Gibraltar, and Leeds, and William Hill will be looking to streamline the new acquisition as much as possible when the deal is complete. The company hopes to relocate or redeploy these workers where possible. However, there may be some job losses.

If any employees do lose their jobs, they will be given appropriate redundancy packages. There is no timeline as to when this may happen. However, it might affect several departments, particularly in the online sections.

Details of this acquisition

William Hill will pay about £241m ($306.5m) to acquire the Sweden-based online gambling platform Mr Green and Company. This equates to £5.90 ($7.50) per share, which represents a good premium on the stock price.

Mr Green has a presence in 13 markets, with different brands, such as RedBet. Among the countries in which the company holds gambling licenses are Ireland, the United Kingdom, Malta, Latvia, Italy, and Denmark. They are planning to obtain a Swedish license by 2019.

This acquisition will put William Hill in a strong position in the European market.

William Hill will improve online revenues and reduce its exposure in the United Kingdom market. The company will now have a combination of brands instead of just a single one and can continue to pursue new opportunities and ventures globally.

The William Hill online operations have been struggling, with revenues falling 5% per the most recent figures. A large chunk of revenue will be lost after April 2019, when fixed odds betting terminals will have their max stake slashed and their online taxes will increase from 15% up to 21%. Therefore, William Hill is looking at ways in which to counterbalance these losses of revenue in the longer term.

Further William Hill expansion

William Hill has been focusing on expansion throughout 2018. Perhaps its most significant focus is on the burgeoning sports betting market in the United States.

The company has been quick to get on board with sportsbooks in states where sports betting is legal. William Hill is vying mainly with European rival Paddy Power (through FanDuel) for the sports betting business.

William Hill has a long-running relationship with Monmouth Park in New Jersey and was set to open a sportsbook there a few years ago. However, a lawsuit from the major sports leagues prevented it.

When New Jersey was officially able to offer legal sports betting, William Hill began operating sportsbooks at the race track and the Ocean Resort Casino in Atlantic City. The company’s mobile app is also becoming very popular in the state.

Based on the latest figures, more people are now placing bets through mobile sports betting apps than at offline venues in New Jersey. People are even coming from out of state to do so.

William Hill’s most recent sports betting offering in the United States is in Rhode Island, which began in late November. The company is also involved with projects in Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

Eldorado Resorts deal

Perhaps its biggest deal to date in the United States is with Eldorado Resorts. This partnership announcement was made in September. Under the 25-year agreement, William Hill will operate the sportsbooks for all of the El Dorado venues.

That gives the country entry into another 13 states where sports betting is legal or soon will be. This new relationship will officially begin in the first few months of 2019. William Hill will be the exclusive sports betting partner for offline and online sports betting operations with El Dorado.

This casino group has 21 properties in 11 states with access to more than 23 million customers. El Dorado will acquire Tropicana Entertainment in 2019, which will give the company an additional 26 facilities in 13 states.

Under the partnership, El Dorado gets a 20% stake in William Hill’s US business and $50m (£39.3m) worth of stock. It certainly looks like a win-win deal for both parties.