Each week, CasinoBeats breaks down the numbers behind some of the industry’s most interesting stories. In the first edition of 2020 we take on a distinct US flavour with a look back on a $1.1bn merger, $25m purchase and DraftKings partnership.
Gateway Casinos and Entertainment has announced a business combination with Leisure Acquisition Corp, to be undertaken through its GTWY Holdings Limited company.
The consolidation will see Leisure merge into a wholly-owned subsidiary of GTWY in a transaction with a pro forma enterprise valuation of approximately US$1.115bn, with HG Vora Capital Management supporting the transaction through a US$30m equity commitment.
Following completion of the transaction Marc Falcone, currently a director of Leisure, will become president and chief executive officer of Gateway.
Upon this appointment becoming effective, Tony Santo, Gateway’s current CEO, will retire from the company but will continue as an advisor to the board of directors and Falcone for three months to assist with an orderly transition.
Malta headquartered River iGaming has announced a suspension of all B2C activities resulting in the redundancy of all individuals in the operation, with the firm establishing a “strong and dedicated” B2B focus during 2020.
This builds upon remarks by CEO Kent Staahle in the company’s Q3 presentation earlier this month, stating that developments in the igaming industry had taken “some significant turns” that were said to be “adversely affecting River iGaming’s operations”.
With demand for B2B solutions “above expectations,” Staahle explained that “the market related to the company’s B2C brands has been very challenging, and the B2C business has performed significant below communicated expectations, which is affecting the overall performance of the group in H2 2019”. Subsequently initiating and partially completing significant cost cuts.
Providing a further update on developments since publishing the Q3 trading presentation, the group explains: “Since Q3 River has carried out a further strategic review of the B2C vertical and the group’s financial situation. River does not expect the market position in the B2C vertical to improve in the short to medium term, and the group’s liquidity situation has become challenging.
Boston, Massachusetts, headquartered DraftKings has partnered with the New Hampshire Lottery to officially launch mobile and online sports betting in the state.
Becoming the exclusive digital operator for sports betting in The Granite State, individuals over 18 years of age are now permitted to bet on their favourite teams heading into the New Year using DraftKings’ digital sportsbook. New Hampshire state laws do not allow wagers to be placed on college teams from the state or college games taking place within state lines.
Governor Chris Sununu placed the Granite State’s ceremonial first legal sports wager on the New England Patriots to win the Super Bowl, done so alongside DraftKings co-founder and Chief Revenue Officer, Matt Kalish and former NFL great Rob Ninkovich.
“Sports betting is the right bet for New Hampshire,” stated Sununu. “We moved fast to get this done by partnering with a world-class company to provide a first-rate customer service experience and the state is poised to dominate the market. The launch of sports betting will also benefit our education system – a win for our kids.”
Everi Holdings has, via its wholly owned subsidiary Everi Payments, acquired certain strategic assets of Micro Gaming Technologies in a deal worth up to $25m.
The provider of gaming products, financial technology and player loyalty solutions in the gaming industry has lauded the deal as “an attractive complementary addition” to the Everi portfolio.
MGT is a privately owned provider of self-service casino loyalty, marketing products and promotional tools and apps, with the deal also providing a portfolio of customer locations where MGT’s solutions are currently installed, including at properties of many key Everi customers.
Under the terms of the transaction, Everi acquired certain assets of MGT for an initial payment at the time of closing of $15m, with a further $5m to be paid April 1, 2020, and $5m on December 24, 2021. Everi expects to fund the acquisition from existing cash on hand and future cash flow, with the transaction expected to be immediately accretive to earnings and adjusted EBITDA.
Darren Simmons, Everi’s executive vice president and fintech business leader, explained: “The acquisition of the MGT assets will further strengthen our ability to provide our customers with a one-stop shop of comprehensive, integrated solutions that enable a seamless, convenient experience for casino patrons while delivering operational efficiencies for casino operators.”