William Hill Rejects £3.6 Billion Takeover Offer

Rank/888 in William Hill takeover rumours.

The Rank/888 coalition makes a £3.6 billion play for William Hill but the bookie says no. (Image: William Hill)

The Rank/888 coalition that’s been sizing up a bid for William Hill over the last few months has finally put together a formal offer according to the Financial Times.

Although the specifics of the deal have been kept under wraps, two sources briefed on the plan have told the Financial Times that Rank and 888 Holdings have offered 364p per share.

However, by the time all is said and done and various deals have been struck, the true offer per share is expected to hit 408p which would make the deal worth £3.6 billion.

A Potential Super Power

Should the three companies merge to form another iGaming super group, the market cap of the new entity would hover around the £4.5 billion mark which would make it larger than the recently formed Paddy Power Betfair (£3.9 billion).

2015 was undoubtedly the year of mergers in the UK, but 888 Holdings missed out on a number of deals including a bid for bwin.

However, with its executives clearly in the market to merge the company’s online assets with a major high street sports betting operator, it seems as though it will only be a matter of time before it happens.

Unfortunately, according to the latest reports, it doesn’t seem as though the papers will be signed just yet.

Following up its initial report, the Financial Times claims that William Hill has rejected the £3.6 billion offer as it “substantially undervalues” the company.

More Moves for UK Gambling Industry

In other UK gambling news this week, the Gambling Commission has formally acknowledged Bitcoin as valid currency. Coming into effect on October 31, the new rule will allow all licensed operators to add Bitcoin deposit and withdrawal options to their platforms.

Since launching in 2009, Bitcoin has operated on the fringes of the financial world. Despite offering a myriad of inherent benefits, such as the secure way it’s processed, the masses have yet to fully embrace Bitcoin.

However, in comparison to the general population, online bettors are often more willing to accept new technology which could mean it becomes a popular new deposit option for players in the coming months.

While Bitcoin-friendly operators will be thanking the UKGC this week, Camelot probably won’t be singing the organisation’s praises any time soon.

The operator of the National Lottery was recently fined £300,000 by the UKGC after it was deemed to have undermined public confidence in the brand.

According to the UKGC’s report, Camelot breached the terms of its operating licence by publishing inaccurate results on its website back in October 2015.

Although the Lotto Millionaire Raffle results were only live for just over an hour, 100,000 people managed to view them in that time and that was enough for the UKGC to take action.

“When errors occur, it is essential that the interests of players are put first and we will not hesitate to use our enforcement powers to take the necessary action to make requirements clear and to deter the likelihood of future incidents,” read an official statement from the gaming regulator.

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