US casino owner Bally’s has agreed a takeover deal for Jackpotjoy owner Gamesys in a move which could value the UK firm at more than £2 billion.
Shares in online gambling firm Gamesys soared after Bally’s told US investors it had agreed on key terms regarding a potential deal.
Bally’s Corporation, which operates casinos and racetracks in the US, said Gamesys shareholders would receive 1,850 pence per share.
It also proposed a share alternative plan for investors which would see them receive 0.343 new Bally’s shares for their Gamesys stock, valuing Gamesys shares at 1,655p.
Shares in the London-based takeover target have soared since the pandemic – rising by more than 150% since March last year- as online gambling increased in popularity while lockdown measures have been in place.
Gamesys said the two firms believe the move would be “a compelling strategic and financial opportunity to improve the offering and experience for customers” in a London stock exchange statement.
It said the move would help Bally’s expand in the nascent US sport-betting market using Gamesys’ technology platforms and management.
The combined entity will be headquartered in Rhode Island and shares will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
Lee Fenton, chief executive officer at Gamesys, will become chief of the combined business.
The deal comes after a flurry of takeover interest from the US for UK gambling firms, with William Hill expected to complete its £2.9 billion takeover by Caesars in the coming days.
Ladbrokes owner Entain was also the target of interest from fellow casino giant MGM but walked away from talks in January.