Aristocrat has revealed that its regulatory approvals process is making headway with the Australian gaming manufacturer’s offer remaining as the only one on the table for the acquisition of Playtech, following the withdrawal of rival bidder, JKO Play.
With the JKO Play consortium backing away from negotiations, Aristocrat is taking the opportunity to revise its current offer to its previous, lower bid.
In an official release, the operator restated its recommended cash acquisition offer to Playtech’s shareholders, stating that JKO’s withdrawal leaves it as the last remaining bidder and that its offer affords “full and fair value” with “attractive cash certainty”.
“The Playtech board recommended acquisition remains the only firm offer available to Playtech shareholders, despite the substantial amount of time provided to potential bidders to make alternative proposals.”
“Aristocrat further confirms that the regulatory approvals process remains well on track, and it is committed to completing the acquisition as quickly as possible. Aristocrat reiterates that the terms of the recommended acquisition provide full and fair value for Playtech shareholders, with attractive cash certainty.” The company continued.
A Long Road
The respective boards of Playtech and Aristocrat jointly announced a recommended cash acquisition of the former in October 2021, at $9.22 per share. JKO Play threw its hat in the ring in November of the same year, leading to speculation of a standoff between the two contenders. At the time, Aristocrat made a firm statement of its intent, saying,
“Our long term engagement with regulators across key gaming jurisdictions together with strong financial fundamentals, deep customer relationships and established presence in global gaming markets positions us to complete the transaction as planned in the second quarter of the calendar year 2022.”
As it turned out, a bidding war never emerged with JKO’s somewhat baffling decision to concede, as the company’s CEO had reportedly already sourced adequate funding for his offer from PartyGaming director and co-founder, Vikrant Bhargava.
Aristocrat closed off by appealing to the shareholders who are still cagey regarding their positions on the proposed acquisition, advising them to vote in favour of its offer.
“Aristocrat also notes comments in Playtech’s announcement regarding a number of material investors who have not to date engaged meaningfully about their views on the recommended acquisition. Aristocrat urges all Playtech shareholders to vote in favour of the recommended acquisition at the relevant shareholder meetings to be convened on February 2,” the statement concluded.