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Sir Puntalot

Paddy Power/Betfair Purchase The Stars Group (Skybet)

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Breaking news this morning. Will be interesting to see how that plays out. :unsure 

Flutter Entertainment has agreed an all-share deal to buy PokerStars owner The Stars Group (TSG) to create what the two companies claim will be the world’s largest online betting and gaming operator.

The merger will see Flutter shareholders own 54.6% of the new company and TSG shareholders own 45.4%, with the combination expected to deliver pre-tax cost synergies of £140m per annum.

According to a joint statement this morning, the combined group would have recorded full-year revenue of £3.8bn in 2018, with brands in the group including PokerStars, Sky Bet, FanDuel, Paddy Power and Betfair.

Upon completion of the deal the new senior management team of the combined group will include Flutter CEO Peter Jackson as group CEO, TSG CEO Rafi Ashkenazi as COO and Flutter chair Gary McGann as group chair.

A new 14-person board will also be created, consisting of Jackson, Ashkenazi, McGann, TSG executive chairman Divyesh Gadhia, Flutter CFO Jonathan Hill and former Sky Betting & Gaming CEO Richard Flint as a non-executive director.

“The combination represents a great opportunity to deliver a step change in our presence in international markets and ensure we are ideally positioned to take advantage of the exciting opportunity in the US through a media relationship with FOX Sports as well as our development of US sports betting through Flutter’s FanDuel and TSG’s FOX Bet brands,” Jackson said.

He added: “The combination will turbocharge our existing four-pillar strategy and provide world-class capabilities across sports betting, gaming, daily fantasy sports and poker, as well as greater geographical and product diversification.

“We believe the combination of Flutter and TSG will deliver substantial value for shareholders. We will have an exceptional portfolio of leading recreational brands and best-in-class products on industry-leading technology platforms.”

Flutter Entertainment’s share price was up 15.22% at the time of writing.

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