Online gambling technology firm acquires Vienna-based Best Gaming Technology
Online gambling technology provider Playtech plc has announced the Euro 138 million acquisition of the Vienna-based sports betting software developer Best Gaming Technology.
The purchase price will be paid from Playtech's substantial cash pile.
Headquartered in Vienna, BGT was founded in 2005 and provides sports betting software and solutions for gaming and betting operators. Its customer base includes, amongst others, some of the most well established bookmakers in the UK and Spain, such as Betfred, Codere, Coral, Ladbrokes, Paddy Power Betfair and William Hill.
BGT's main product is its proprietary software for self-service betting terminals ("SSBTs"). Its offering combines technology with a digital terminal that revolutionises the traditional over-the-counter experience, at times generating more than double the volumes of other SSBT providers, a statement from Playtech claims.
Other products include ePOS and till systems for betting operators and an omni-channel web / mobile betting platform. The acquisition will provide Playtech with greater penetration into the Spanish and Italian markets with several significant potential new customers in the pipeline, the statement adds.
"SSBTs and ePOS systems that digitise retail betting businesses form one of the fastest growing areas for betting companies and one of the most important elements of a true omni-channel offering. BGT's product portfolio will enhance the Playtech One omni-channel offering, which enables players to enjoy a seamless, anywhere-anytime gaming experience across any product, channel and device, all using a single account and wallet," the statement explains.
BGT's business model is based on a revenue share of the gross win margin from each SSBT. At the end of FY2015, BGT provided approximately 24,000 SSBTs with its betting software to licensed operators with this number forecast to increase significantly over the coming years driven primarily by the roll-out of new SSBTs, compact terminals and tablets as bet entry devices as well as by increased usage of existing SSBTs.
Playtech has acquired 90 percent of the issued share capital of BGT, with the remaining 10 percent retained by Dr. Armin Sageder, BGT's founder and CEO, who will remain with BGT for at least 3 years from completion.
Playtech has a call option to purchase the remaining 10 percent of BGT at a valuation of 6x BGT's 2019 EBITDA, subject to a maximum consideration of Euro 55 million for the 10 percent holding, with Dr. Sageder having certain put options over his holding at the same valuation. Dr. Sageder may also be entitled to an additional payment of Euro 5 million subject to the achievement of certain operational milestones.
In FY2015, BGT generated revenues of Euro 41.6 million, with all of these revenues coming from regulated markets, and over three quarters of revenues coming from the SSBT software segment. BGT generated adjusted EBITDA of Euro 12.9 million in FY2015 and Euro 12.5 million of adjusted EBITDA in the first six months of 2016. In 2015, BGT generated profit before tax of Euro 6 million and had gross assets of Euro 35.9 million as at the year end.
Playtech has acquired BGT on a forecast 2016 EBITDA multiple of less than 7 times, an attractive multiple for an asset of this quality, which has a track record of significant growth and which is expected to continue to achieve significant growth going forwards in both revenues and profit, including margin expansion.
The acquisition is expected to generate high single-digit earnings accretion for Playtech in the first full year of ownership.
Playtech CEO Mor Weizer, said in Wednesday's statement:
"We believe that the future of gaming is for retail operators to digitise their offering, creating a simple and intuitive experience for customers as well as creating an opportunity to extend beyond retail and into online, including web and mobile. This follows the same trends we see in other commercial sectors around the world with the modernisation and digitisation of betting shops not only improving the retail experience but also adding a whole new channel as it integrates into an online offering.
"BGT is the leading provider in what is one of the fastest growing verticals of our industry. BGT offers the market's most sophisticated retail sports solution which is also both modularised and flexible, allowing Playtech to quickly integrate with its own platform. As the only company that will offer FOBTs and SSBTs, all integrated with the world's leading online platform and products, Playtech will realise the potential of a true omni-channel offering for the benefit of both consumers and operators."
Armin Sageder, Chief Executive Officer of BGT, added:
"When I founded BGT in Vienna, Austria, in mid-2005 I had the vision of a high-end provider for the sports betting industry with a focus on self-service systems. Whilst other suppliers focused on online and digital, I focused BGT on land-based technology.
"BGT is at an inflexion point in its development as we penetrate into new markets whilst upgrading our products. I believe that becoming part of the Playtech family will allow Playtech and BGT to take omni-channel to the next level."
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