Caesars Entertainment has reached an agreement to acquire William Hill for approximately £2.9bn ($3.72bn).
The deal will see the US operator’s UK subsidiary Caesars Bidco, acquire the entire issued share capital of William Hill, paying 272p in cash for each share, with the takeover subject to approval from the operator’s shareholders.
Once given anti-trust and regulatory approvals, the takeover, which was in advanced stages earlier this week, is expected to be completed in the second half of 2021.
The acquisition will focus on the US sports betting market, with Caesars believing the combination will be able to utilise its assets to better serve its customer base and increase market access in the country.
Caesars expects the merger to generate between $600 to $700m in net revenue for 2021 in the US, and is seeking buyers for all William Hill’s non-US operations, including its UK business.
Caesars Entertainment CEO Tom Reeg said: “We look forward to working with William Hill to support future growth in the US by providing our customers with a superior and comprehensive experience across all areas of gaming, sports betting, and entertainment."
William Hill chairman Roger Devlin added: "The William Hill Board believes this is the best option for William Hill at an attractive price for shareholders.
“In terms of our UK and International businesses, we believe they have a strong future ahead and we will work with Caesars to find suitable partners to further the long-term growth prospects of these businesses."
The deal is an expansion on the joint US venture which sees Caesars hold an 20% equity ownership, with William Hill, who holds the remaining 80%, running online sports betting operations through Caesars’ market access in each state.