Ladbrokes owner in $200m deal with MGM Resorts

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Last week, news emerged of a merger between GVC (owner of Ladbrokes) – the world’s biggest casino operator and MGM Resorts; the world’s biggest entertainments company. The $200m merger is set to change the face of US sports betting, with a both companies playing a 50/50 role in bringing sportsbook services to the many states of America. Gambling on sports has been an illegal act in America since federal laws were brought into effect in 1992, but in May 2018, the supreme court overturned this outdated law by a victorious 6 to 3 ruling. Nevada was the only state in which placing a wager on sports betting was legal, so this is where the first sportsbook site is set to launch and GVC’s Partypoker and Sportingbet websites are set to be in the spotlight. The joint venture will benefit from the expertise of two multi-million dollar gambling companies, which will allow integration between GVC loyalty programs and MGM Resorts – which can only mean great things for customers.

Proud to join forces

Jim Murren, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of MGM Resorts commented on the merger; “We are proud to join forces with GVC, the largest and most dynamic global online betting operator, with existing reputable and trusted operations in the U.S. With MGM Resorts’ expertise and leading position in key markets across the U.S., this historic partnership will be positioned to become the instant leader in technology, market access, sports relationships and brands. We are excited to benefit from GVC’s proprietary, best-in-class technology, digital customer acquisition expertise, and experience with adapting to new operating environments. GVC is unusually qualified due to their existing operations in the U.S. Together, we are creating a one-of-a-kind platform that we expect will dominate the U.S. sports betting market.”

Chief Executive of GVC Kenneth Alexander added; “MGM Resorts is a world leading entertainment business and the most trusted name in gaming, with the highest quality brands and management, and strong sports connectivity. This combined with GVC’s technology and experience in successfully building online gaming businesses across multiple markets presents a truly exciting opportunity for U.S. players and our respective shareholders. To be able to team up with a partner with such pedigree and knowledge, particularly in the U.S., is a real opportunity for GVC.”

GVC shares shot through the roof

GVC, the FTSE-listed gambling group have soared to a record high since the news of the merger hit international news; rising as much as 7.5% to 1,178p, before dipping back to 5%. There’s no doubt about it, the biggest party in this merger is MGM Resorts, with a market price of $17.5bn (as of 27th Jul 2018), compared to just $6.29bn to GVC Holdings. The merger will no doubt change the face of the gambling industry across the US, and pave way for the company to venture into many other states across the US.