Changes in the iGaming landscape for 2022
Last year we saw some big moves on the iGaming landscape with one of the most notable being Evolution taking over NetEnt, which also meant the company took on Red Tiger already owned by NetEnt. Plus, there was that huge deal of century worth £11 million (€13 million) when Flutter Entertainment and The Stars Group merged.
And it has been another one of those years with big name companies acquiring small to large brands names with Evolution right in the midst of it all again. We also saw 888 Holdings expand its reach after it took William Europe under it wings, while right now the big news surrounds the potential deal of the year which will see Aristocrat land UK London Stock Exchange listed Playtech PLC.
Below we take a closer look at some of 2021’s most talked about iGaming deals shifting market share and company valuations in online gambling today!
Aristocrat Bids for Playtech – The Takeover Looks Set for January 2022
We’ll start with a deal that began this year and will finalise in 2022. Playtech PLC made no secret that it was looking for the right company to take it over and it was Aristocrat Leisure, an Australian stock exchange listed company, that came in with a €3.1 billion bid. Since then, drama has surrounded the deal with Hong Kong investment firm Gopher Investments trying to hijack the deal. However, the HK company pulled out only for new rumours on the iGaming grapevine that suggest a Chinese investor, Hao Liu, may try her luck after purchasing shares for more than their original value.
Ultimately the company that takes over Playtech will down to shareholder votes which will take place in January next year. For the time being Aristocrat is the favourite, and not only that, but also the obvious choice due its years of experience in the gambling industry.
Evolution Acquires Big Time Gaming (BTG) & the Rights to Megaways
In July, Evolution confirmed its acquisition of BTG for €220 million. BTG is a huge catch, and the price is a bargain if you consider that all software providers using the Megaways reel mechanics must display the BTG logo and pay royalties on any slots using the feature. Its also a nice addition to Evolution’s NetEnt and Red Tiger acquisitions last year.
William Hill Acquired by Caesars Entertainment
Now there’s a lot of history that goes into this deal. Eldorado Resorts merged with Caesars Entertainment Corporation in a purchase for stocks and cash worth $17 billion (€15 billion). The company then changed its name to Caesars Entertainment Inc. It was at this point the company then purchased William Hill in a takeover bid worth $ 3.7 billion.
888 Takeover of William Hill European Assets
Following on from the above merger, Caesars Entertainment Inc began to sell off its non-US assets. That meant selling land-based casino and William Hill assets to local operators. It also auctioned William Hill’s European based online casino brands, online bookies, and retail bookmaker shops. It was 888 Holdings PLC that came in with the most attractive bid beating Apollo Global Management, who originally lost out to Caesars Entertainment the first time around, to the punch after making an offer worth £2.2 billion (€2.6 billion).
Scientific Games Takes Over Authentic Gaming Live Dealer Brand & Studios
We already have Evolution, Pragmatic Play, and Playtech as huge names in the live dealer arena. Nonetheless, there is still room for big brand names to come and join the party as this iGaming vertical now makes up for 30% of all bets made in online casinos. And the latest prestigious iGaming giant to get involved is Scientific Games after it acquired Authentic Gaming for an undisclosed amount. Now this could mean a huge shift in the live dealer market as anything Scientific Games gets involved in usually means it wants to be the best.
Other 2021 Deal to Take Note Of – Flutter Entertainment Busy!
Over the year we also saw Bally’s Merges with Gamesys in a $2 billion (€1.76 billion) deal, Flutter Entertainment acquired FanDuel for $4.18 Billion (€3.68 billion), and Flutter Entertainment took over Sisal Group for £1.6 billion (€1.9 billion). There is also plenty of deal making in the US market where DraftKings acquired Golden Nugget Online Gaming (GNOG) for $1.56 billion (€1.3 billion). Then, to top it all off one deal in particular worth keeping tabs on if you are interested, and that is the continuation of MGM’s ambitions to take over London Stock Exchange listed iGaming firm Entain PLC.