Those Who Are About To Buy Salute You, Playtech Makes A Big Play On Italy
Supreme gambling software gladiator Playtech has confirmed news reports that it has launched a £500 million bid (€576.73m) to buy Italian bookies PlanetWin365.
But the Estonia-origin, Isle of Man-headquartered playmaker may have to compete with fellow FTSE gambling heavy-hitters Flutter to acquire PlanetWin365 (SKS365 Malta Holdings Ltd.).
With both Playtech and Flutter already having extensive Italian holdings, the move for PlanetWin365 and its 1,000 betting shops makes perfect sense.
Playtech already owns Snaitech, an Omnichannel which it bought for €900 million in 2018 (£780.25m), and this new acquisition would make the company the biggest B2C operator in Italy.
Flutter, for its part, bought Italian lottery giant Sisal–former UK Lottery bidders–for €1.9 billion last year (£1.64bn).
Today (October 2) Playtech confirmed: “Following the recent media speculation, [we] confirm that the Group is currently participating in a process regarding the potential acquisition of SKS365 Malta Holdings Limited.
“[We are] aware that there are other parties who are also participating in the process, and who have expressed an interest in acquiring SKS.
“There can be no certainty that Playtech will be successful in the process, nor that any transaction regarding the potential acquisition of SKS will be agreed.”
Playtech shares remained steady in the region of 482 pence-per-share in early morning trading on the news.
The company’s Italian Snaitech business generated €488 million in revenue during Playtech H1 trading this year (£423.07m), some 55 percent of total interim revenues.
Italy’s centre-right government has launched an ambitious overhaul of Italy’s cacophonous and often legally contradictory gaming industry.
Flutter, which has been on something of a buying spree of late, having acquired Serbia’s MaxBet for €141 million only last week (£122.24m), among other moves, has to date declined to comment on its PlanetWin365 ambitions.
Playtech has promised gambling industry watchers:
“Further announcements will be made as–and when–appropriate.”