Stars Group to acquire remaining stake in BetEasy
The Stars Group (TSG) is set to take full control of BetEasy after agreeing a deal to acquire the remaining 20% interest in the Australian sports betting operator for AU$151m (£79.5m/€93.3m/US$103.3m).
TSG, which already holds an 80% stake in BetEasy, said it expects to complete the purchase within 90 days of publishing its results for the year ended 31 December, 2020, or finalising its merger with Flutter Entertainment.
The purchase price will be settled in cash, unless it takes place after the Flutter merger, in which case Flutter could opt to settle in cash, ordinary shares or a combination of both.
As part of the acquisition deal, TSG has also agreed to pay AU$100m to settle the previously disclosed performance payment under the terms of its purchase of the initial 80% stake in BetEasy. This payment could have reached AU$232m, having been subject to performance conditions related to BetEasy's earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation.
In addition, under the agreement, TSG will now repay AU$$56.9m of outstanding BetEasy minority shareholder loans.
“The launch of BetEasy through our acquisitions of CrownBet and William Hill Australia in 2018 created one of the leading operators in Australia and increased our exposure to a high-growth regulated market,” TSG chief executive Rafi Ashkenazi said.
Matt Tripp, currently chief executive of BetEasy, will provide ongoing leadership as non-executive president of BetEasy from 1 January, 2020.
Andrew Menz, who was previously BetEasy’s director of strategy and regulatory affairs, will take on the role of CEO. Menz also spent time as legal and corporate affairs director at Betfair Australia and helped to establish Responsible Wagering Australia, a trade association for the country’s online wagering industry.
Trip said: “I’m pleased to see our long-term succession plan come to fruition. Andrew Menz brings deep commercial and regulatory experience which leaves BetEasy in a strong position to continue delivering profitable growth.
“I know that this business, which we founded back in 2013, is in very capable hands with a strong executive team and the backing of The Stars Group, who have been terrific partners and global leaders in this industry.”
Ashkenazi added: “Matt Tripp's entrepreneurial spirit and vision has guided BetEasy since he founded the business and we are glad he will oversee the transition as non-executive president.”