The online gambling industry could experience a shake up, as 888 and Rank are in negotiations to merge with William Hill
One of the UK’s largest gambling firms could soon be expanding. UK gambling news was reported today that 888 and Rank, two of William Hill’s rival companies, have proposed a merger. William Hill has stated that the talks are “highly preliminary,” and all companies involved are discussing options.
Investors are clearly interested, as William Hill’s stock price rose by 4.8%, 888’s shares rose by 3.4%, and Rank’s stock price dropped by 0.5%.
The idea of a merger comes at a peculiar time, as William Hill’s chief executive, James Henderson, was recently removed from the company following a period of revenue loss. William Hill’s shares have dropped in price by a staggering 21% since the beginning of the year.
888 and Rank may Merge Before Making a Formal Offer to William Hill
All the parties involved see the potential that a merger could provide, but have not yet revealed the offers on either side. It was stated in a weekend report that 888 and Rank may be the first to merge, and afterwards submit a proposal to William Hill, perhaps as a larger negotiating tactic.
The two companies issued a statement to the press saying, “In relation to the proposed transaction, no decision has yet been taken as to whether 888 would be an offeror or offeree company in respect of certain of the steps that may be taken in order to implement the proposed transaction.”
This news comes after a number of other high-profile mergers between gambling firms. Recently, Ladbrokes and Gala Coral agreed to a £2.3 billion merger, and in September, Paddy Power and Betfair came to an agreement which quickly saw the companies gain an £11 million profit gain in their first three months together.
What do you think? Will 888 and Rank join William Hill? Will that be good for the gambling industry? Leave your comments below, and make sure to check out GamingZion’s list of online sportsbooks in the UK to find a complete list of the best websites for betting on sports!