News

07/03/18

G+T advises The Stars Group on its acquisitions of CrownBet and William Hill to create Australia’s third largest bookmaker

Gilbert + Tobin today announced it is advising TSX/NASDAQ-listed The Stars Group Inc. on its acquisition of 80 percent of CrownBet and on CrownBet’s successful bid to acquire William Hill Australia.

The deal involved a series of complex and interrelated transactions. The first transaction, which closed on 27 February, involved the purchase of the 62% stake in CrownBet previously held by ASX-listed Crown Resorts for $150 million. The other transactions involved The Stars Group increasing its equity interest in CrownBet from 62% to 80%, and CrownBet successfully bidding to acquire William Hill Australia, for an aggregate purchase price of approximately $400 million. William Hill’s presence in the Australian sports betting market evolved through the acquisitions of Sportingbet, Centrebet and tomwaterhouse.com although following the acquisitions William Hill changed the brands to William Hill Australia.

This series of deals will result in The Stars Group becoming the 80% majority shareholder in the third largest wagering operator in Australia.

The transactions were led by Corporate Advisory Partners Costas Condoleon and David Josselsohn.

Costas and David said they are thrilled to have leveraged the firm’s deep corporate expertise to achieve this outstanding outcome for The Stars Group.

“The transactions were complex and fast-paced, involving two competitive sale processes with stakeholders located globally. We’re delighted to have been able to apply our significant M&A expertise and strategic input to enable The Stars Group to successfully expand its business in a new market with further opportunities for growth,” Costas says.

The core transaction team, led by Costas and David, comprised Senior Lawyer Kevin Ko and Lawyers Wes Bainbridge, Adrian Zhang, Alexandra Greig and Graduate Jamie Pounch, with strong support from experts throughout the firm including Banking + Infrastructure Partner Gail Christopher, Consultants Kate Twomey and Kerry Carew and Lawyer Justin Greer, Technology + Digital Special Counsel Andrew Hii and Lawyer Clare Harris, Regulatory Lawyers Jeremy Jose and Dylan Gardner, Intellectual Property Lawyers Anna Smyth, Mindaugas Skavronskas and Michael Cassidy, Employment Lawyers James Pomeroy and Ian Metz and Real Estate & Projects Lawyers Jo Bayes and Graduate Rebecca Smyth.

The deal is expected to complete in April 2018.

Gilbert + Tobin has advised on many of Australia’s largest and most innovative recent M&A transactions, including IOOF’s acquisition of ANZ’s One Path and Wealth Management Division, Carlton-United Breweries’ acquisition of Four Pines Brewing, Cover-more on the Scheme of Arrangement with Zurich, Beach Energy’s acquisition of Lattice Energy, and Spotless on the defence of Downer EDI’s takeover bid.

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