The two companies have recently formed a joint venture gambling enterprise under British gambling laws – William Hill Online (WHO). Playtech has a 29 percent stake in the newly formed online gambling establishment.
Ever since William Hill set sights on the Sporting (GVC) business, Playtech executives have been making hints that the purchase should benefit the joint venture as well, and not just William Hill itself.
William Hill is planning to acquire Sportingbet, a company operating online sportsbooks in United Kingdom among others, for a hefty sum of GBP 454.
Mor Weizer, CEO of Playtech, opined that William Hill is “…bound to conduct its remote gambling business through the William Hill Online business, in which Playtech is a 29 percent shareholder.”
He went on to add that once the William Hill – GVC offer is completed, Sportingbet’s remote gambling activities must be offered to the joint venture WHO within six month of the purchase. Moreover, Playtech possesses the right to determine if WHO is in favor of such a deal or not.
Playtech’s statement to the United Kingdom gambling news reads: “Playtech believes that it is likely that the acquisition of the Sportingbet activities would add considerable value to William Hill Online.” Such position is regarded by industry analysts as an attempt to pump up the value of Playtech’s 29 percent stake in WHO, especially in times when rumors suggest that William Hill is already evaluating the possibility to buy its partner out.
William Hill has retaliated to Mor Weizer’s words, saying in a statement: “Playtech have no rights to a business that is not part of William Hill Online and therefore this has absolutely no effect on any valuation”.
It looks like we’re in for a lengthy and interesting word battle between William Hill and Playtech on the subject of Sportingbet acquisition and the future of William Hill Online as well.