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Playtech Sets Deadline for TTB Partners Takeover Offer

Looks like an offer will finally drop

We may know within a month if another, significant offer is on the table to acquire online gambling software development company Playtech. On Friday, the gaming giant that powers the iPoker Network announced that it has given TTB Partners until June 17 to make a formal buyout offer on behalf of its still-unnamed investor group.

TTB might be joined by Mor Weizer, Playtech’s CEO, as well as former CEO Tom Hall. Because of his announcement of these intentions in February, Weizer was required to divorce himself from the company’s board of directors’ decisions surrounding any possible offer. After all, it would be a significant conflict of interest were he involved in deliberations. The rest of the board is forming an independent committee to evaluate a possible offer.

“Discussions between the Company and TTB are ongoing and progress continues to be made,” said Playtech in a press release. “There continues to be no certainty that an offer will be made, or the terms on which any offer may be made. The Independent Committee is conscious that TTB has been considering a possible offer for Playtech for 15 weeks. The Independent Committee continues to explore options for maximising shareholder value, and reiterates the strong performance of the Group, as announced to the market on 5 May 2022, which has continued through the month of April and into the month of May.”

Playtech has been a target for months

The courting of Playtech has been going on since October 2021. It was then that Australian slot machine manufacturer Aristocrat Leisure Ltd. announced an all-cash, AU$5 billion (US$3.5 billion) takeover offer for Playtech. Aristocrat offered 680p (US$9.35 at the time, US$8.55 now) per share, a whopping 58% premium over Playtech’s closing price before the bid.

Just a couple weeks later, Reuters confirmed that Hong Kong-based Gopher Investments put in an offer of £3 billion (US$3.77 billion). But then, later in November, Gopher withdrew its offer.

Around that same time, JKO Play, a consortium led by ex-Formula One team boss Eddie Jordan, said it was going to make the same bid as Gopher Investments, but also ended up pulling out of the competition in January 2022.

Then, on February 2, 2022, Aristocrat’s bid fell through, as the required 75% of Playtech shareholders failed to approve the deal. The board of directors did give it the green light.

Like most stocks, Playtech’s share price has fallen lately as financial markets have been struggling. Friday’s announcement of TTB Partners’ timeline did give the stock price a nice boost, though. It closed on Thursday at 505p (US$6.35) per share, but jumped to 539p (US$6.77) by Friday’s close for an increase of 6.7%.

Playtech’s share price has since made additional slight gains.