Caesars Entertainment has ended any speculation about their intent to buy William Hill. After speculation that a bid was coming saw William Hill’s share price soar on September, Caesars has confirmed their intent to make a bid, valuing the British sportsbook at £2.9 billion ($3.73 billion).
The bid would come in at 272 pence per share, and Caesars noted its going to make further announcements when appropriate. That might seem low now, as a frenzy of speculation over an upcoming bid drove William Hill’s share price up 43.5% to 312 pence.
“The opportunity to combine our land based-casinos, sports betting and online gaming in the U.S. is a truly exciting prospect,” Caesars’ chief executive Tom Reeg said. “William Hill’s sports betting expertise will complement Caesars’ current offering, enabling the combined group to better serve our customers in the fast growing U.S. sports betting and online market.”
“We look forward to working with William Hill to support future growth in the U.S. by providing our customers with a superior and comprehensive experience across all areas of gaming, sports betting, and entertainment,” Reeg added.
This comes after Apollo Global Management was also revealed to be interested in a bid on Hills. After a Bloomberg report outed the potential offer, Hills admitted it had received “separate cash proposals” from both Apollo and Caesars. Under U.K. rules, both companies had until October 23 to declare their intentions, which Caesars now apparently has.
This isn’t the first time Caesars and Hills have considered some kind of marriage. In 2019, they tried and failed to talk about a merger. Should this one work out, Caesars noted it expects to generate somewhere between $600 million and $700 million in revenue by 2021.
But as the old adage goes, buy the rumor, sell the news. William Hill’s share price has dropped 12% since Caesars confirmed the potential buy-out, indicating the rush to buy up Hills shares on Friday might have gone a little too far.
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