In a brand new press release, The Stars Group Incorporated has revealed that it has now officially completed its planned acquisition of fellow iGaming operator Sky Betting and Gaming (also known as Skybet). The firm behind brands like PokerStars acquired the latter company through a cash and stock purchase valued at over $4.7 billion.
News of the massive acquisition agreement has come after Stars Group managed to raise a whopping $622 million through an initial public offering to help fund its Skybet purchase. Private equity firm CVC, who hold 71% of Skybet’s shares, agreed to purchase its Skybet stake from the operator in 2014, and the deal selling Skybet to Stars Group was announced by CVC and Sky in April this year.
CEO of Toronto-based Stars Group Rafi Ashkenazi has noted that Sky Betting and Gaming will serve to enhance PokerStars’ current offerings, and will also improve the group’s foothold in the regulated iGaming market to around 75% of its overall revenues. Ashkenazi described the agreement as a ‘landmark’ move for his company in his public statement.
The CEO also noted that Skybet operates one of the world’s most rapidly growing sportsbooks, and is also one of the leading gaming suppliers in the UK regulated market. Sky Betting and Gaming’s sports betting product is a perfect addition to Stars’ industry-leading poker gaming brand, he added in his statement.
Ashkenazi has stated that the acquisition will help The Stars Group to offer two cost-effective acquisition channels, which will provide it with huge potential for growth. He also expects that the deal will boost his firm’s ability to create ‘winning moments’ for all of its online players.
Sky Betting and Gaming was purchased by Stars Group using a combination of cash funds and common shares. The newly issued shares were valued at around $37.9 million, all of which were used to fund the groundbreaking deal.
Based in the Canadian city of Toronto, The Stars Group Inc is an online gaming specialist that is listed on both the Nasdaq and Toronto stock exchanges. The firm has been headed up by current CEO Rafael Ashkenazi since November 2016, and currently has Brian Kyle in its CFO position.
Previously known as Amaya Gaming, the Stars Group has modelled its new brand name after one of its most popular iGaming platforms, PokerStars. It also operates subsidiary brands like PokerStars Casino, Full Tilt Poker, and Ruckus Gaming.