Aristocrat Leisure Ltd., an Australian slot machine creator, has agreed to buy British gambling software developer Playtech Plc for a price of A$5 billion ($3.7 billion).
Aristocrat said in a statement Monday that it will pay 680 British pence ($9.35) per Playtech share, a premium of 58% to the company's last closing price on October 15.
The Sydney-based company Aristocrat said it shall raise A$1.3 billion in a share sale to help fund the acquisition, with investors able to buy new shares at a price of $41.95 per share. The stock would be sold at an 8.6% discount to Friday's closing price of $45.79 per share.
The acquisition deal will add more variety to the Australian casino-machines manufacturer in the fast-growing world of online gambling and sports betting, that it estimates was worth $70 billion worldwide in 2020. Aristocrat said that the transaction would create one of the biggest business-to-business platform providers in the global gaming industry.
Aristocrat Chief Executive Officer Trevor Croker said, "The combined group would offer a broad portfolio of end-to-end solutions for gaming customers around the world, as well as seamless player experiences, underpinned by a shared focus on responsible gameplay and innovation."
"Additionally, the business will be ideally positioned to unlock sustainable shareholder value by seizing opportunities in the fast-growing global online RMG segment as they continue to open up, particularly in North America.
"The recommended offer is a full and fair value and reflects the strategic potential of the combination in a global gaming sector that continues to migrate online, as a result of technology and entrenched consumer-driven change."
This deal will mark the latest in a long list of tie-ups aimed at obtaining an early advantage in online gambling, which was already deregulating across the United States before the number of new players exploded during pandemic lockdowns.
Aristocrat expects that Playtech's Italy-based omni-channel gambling operator Snaitech to open up new European markets at the same time as business in North America continues to flourish.
The acquisition is expected to complete in Q2 2022 subject to certain foreign investment, antitrust, financial and gaming regulatory consents and approvals being obtained.