Better Collective to acquire Ribacka in €30m deal

21 December 2018

Better Collective has completed its acquisition of Swedish iGaming affiliate marketing business Ribacka Group in a deal worth up to €30m (£27.1m/$34.3m).

The Denmark-headquartered igaming affiliate marketing specialist will pay an initial €15m in cash to acquire all of the shares in Ribacka, followed by a €6m payment in May 2019 in cash or Better Collective ordinary shares. A final payment of up to €9m will then be made in 2020, based on Ribecka meeting certain performance targets.

Ribacka operates a network of sports betting and casino marketing sites in Sweden, including Speltips.se. Better Collective will now leverage this presence to establish a presence in the country’s sports betting market.

Terms of the deal state that Ribacka will rebrand as Better Collective Sweden and will remain based at its current site in the Swedish capital of Stockholm.

Jesper and Jens Ribacka, the former owners of the business, will also remain in their roles as CEO and board member, respectively. The two will work now with the senior team at Better Collective to identify growth opportunities in the Swedish market.

“We consider Sweden to be one of the most interesting markets for online sports betting in Europe, as we believe a change in market dynamics will expand an already growing market,” Better Collective CEO Jesper Søgaard said. “With the combination of market growth, the successful operation run by Ribacka, and the addition of new talent and visible synergies, we are confident that this acquisition is a strong move for us in Sweden.”

Jesper Ribacka added: “Since 2012, we have worked very hard to build strong brands in the Swedish market and, most importantly, a strong team to help us become a success.

"I trust this new setup will bring us even further, aligning with the core values of transparency and user empowerment that are found at Better Collective.”

The acquisition comes as Sweden prepares to launch its re-regulated market on January 1, 2019. A number of Better Collective's partners have been awarded new licences to go live in the country next month.

Last month, Better Collective cited M&A activity as a key factor in a 68% year-on-year increase in revenue during the third quarter of the year.

Revenue amounted to €11.1m in the three months through to September 30, during which the company finalised the acquisition of Austrian sports betting affiliate Bola Webinformation. Better Collective also acquired Thessaloniki-based affiliate WBS and Malta-based KAPA in Q3.