GiG Targets ‘High Quality’ Sportsbook Expansion via €50.8m Sportnco Acquisition

  • GiG will acquire the sports betting and iGaming firm for €27.3m in cash and €23.5m in GiG shares
  • GiG will issue €25m in shares to SkyCity, which will partially finance the Sportnco cash payment
  • Combined, Sportnco/GiG will operate in 25 legal markets in the US, Europe and Latin America
  • The acquisition is a win-win scenario for GiG and SkyCity, with mutual strategic benefits
Three businesspeople holding puzzle pieces
Malta-headquarted B2B iGaming supplier GiG has acquired sportsbook platform Sportnco in a €50.8m ($57.4m) cash-plus-shares deal linked to New Zealand’s casino resort operator SkyCity. [Image: Shutterstock.com]

Cash-plus-shares deal

iGaming technology giant Gaming Innovation Group (GiG) has acquired sportsbook platform and media supplier Sportnco Gaming SAS in a €50.8m ($57.4m) cash-plus-shares deal.

The Malta-headquartered B2B supplier will acquire Sportnco for a total consideration of €27.3m ($30.8m) in cash and €23.5m ($26.5m) in new GiG equity. The deal implies Sportnco’s enterprise value at €70m ($79.1m) which includes around €19.2m ($21.7m) in debt that GiG will assume.

GiG inked the deal with the Toulouse-based sports betting and iGaming firm December 22, sharing the news via Twitter the same day:

Linked to the Sportnco deal was GiG’s announcement that it will issue €25m ($28m) in shares to one of its platform clients, SkyCity Entertainment Group Limited. The capital from New Zealand-based SkyCity will partially finance the cash payment to Sportnco. According to a GiG news release, SkyCity will hold 11.4% of the shares in GiG, while Sportnco’s shareholders will hold 10.7% after completion of the takeover, which is expected in February.

Highly profitable sportsbook

Adding Sportnco to its portfolio will give GiG a highly profitable sportsbook and position it as a full service platform business with robust profitability. Commercial, operational, and technological synergies aside, GiG said the buyout will also “enable cost savings and accelerated growth.”

Combined, the pair will operate in 25 legal markets currently holding around 55 clients, including strong local players in the US, European, and Latin America markets.

GiG CEO Richard Brown expressed his firm’s excitement at the Sportnco acquisition via `the official news release. The CEO said it speeds up GiG’s long game vision of becoming “a global leader in the provision of platform, sportsbook and media services to the iGaming industry.”

Brown also talked up Sportnco’s “hugely complimentary regulatory profile and high-quality sportsbook,” adding that the buyout accelerates the short- and long-term addressable markets of both firms.

enable us to cover European and American regulated markets for all our existing and future clients”

CEO and founder of Sportnco Hervé Schlosser expressed his excitement over the combined sales potential the acquisition brings. “Sportnco sportsbook will add strength and attractiveness to the offer of GIG and our mutual PAM [player account management] solutions will enable us to cover European and American regulated markets for all our existing and future clients.”

Win-win scenarios

The linking of SkyCity to the Sportnco deal offers a win-win scenario for all parties. SkyCity’s CEO Michael Ahearne said the move was an expansion of a strategic partnership with GiG that began in 2019 with the launch of his brand’s online casino. Ahern said the partnership enabled SkyCity to access a “high-growth gaming category [and] pursue an omnichannel strategy.” The CEO also pointed out how the GiG and Sportnco combination will access over 20 jurisdictions, “including growth markets such as the US, Canada and Latin America.”

SkyCity operates casino resorts in the New Zealand cities of Auckland, Hamilton and Queenstown. Speaking last October about how a recent lockdown cost his firm over NZ$30m (US$19.7m) in lost revenue, group CEO Graham Stephens said he expected the group’s online casino operation to become a more significant revenue earner.

Brown also commented on the inherent synergies and mutual strategies at play between the three brands, particularly in the ongoing digitalization of gambling. Brown said GiG would benefit from decades of SkyCity’s experience in the retail space, while the latter would get bolstered by GiG’s first-hand digital know-how, with both enjoying “new opportunities” via the Sportnco acquisition.