Aristocrat deal fails after Playtech shareholders reject takeover bid

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Aristocrat Leisure’s bid attempt to acquire the gambling software company Playtech for £2.7 billion has failed after the gambling tech firm confirmed that its shareholders have voted to reject the Australia-listed gaming manufacturer’s overtures. The acquisition negotiation had started last year.

The total number of votes in favor of the resolution at the general meeting was 54.68%, below the minimum threshold of 75% required for approval of the transaction. The deal was expected to strengthen competition at the iGaming provider in the online live casino market.

Meanwhile, Playtech says it is currently considering other offerings, but did not reveal names.

The director and CEO of Aristocrat, Trevor Croker said:

“Notwithstanding extensive due diligence on Aristocrat’s part, developments since the announcement of our offer have been highly unusual and largely beyond Aristocrat’s control,” Croker explained. 

“In particular, the emergence of a certain group of shareholders who built a blocking stake while refusing to engage with either ourselves or Playtech materially impacted the prospects for the success of our offer, which had been recommended by the board of Playtech.”

Mr Crocker also states that the company’s commitment to participating in the RNG industry remains part of its strategy and will not change.

Aristocrat’s announcement added:

“Aristocrat has taken every possible step to engage with this group of shareholders and progress the Recommended Acquisition, and to consider all options, including alternate transaction structures.”

What this failed £2.7 billion deal means for the US online gaming industry is still undetermined. However, if the purchase had been completed successfully, it could have helped the company compete with large Scientific Games (SG) and Evolution, for example.