Aristocrat Raises US$674 Million for Playtech Acquisition

Slot machine maker and online gaming content provider Aristocrat Leisure Ltd says it has raised approximately AUD895 million (US$674.2 million) via an institutional entitlement offer, at AUD41.85 per ordinary share. The funds will be used as part of the AUD3.9-billion cash offer for London-listed Playtech Plc, a leading gaming content provider for the online and land-based casino industries.

The offer “was strongly supported by institutional shareholders with a take-up of approximately 92 percent by eligible institutional shareholders,” stated the Australia-listed firm in a Thursday press release.

“We are delighted with the strong level of support for the entitlement offer we have received from our institutional shareholders,” said Aristocrat’s chief executive, Trevor Croker, as quoted in the release.

He added: “The acquisition continues Aristocrat’s approach of investing in medium to long-term growth and we are extremely excited by the opportunities that this will bring for our shareholders, people, customers and players.”

The company also said that the retail component of the entitlement offer will open on October 25, and close on November 8, 2021. The retail part of the offer is “expected to raise approximately AUD405 million,” taking the expected size of Aristocrat’s total equity raising to “approximately AUD1.3 billion”.

Under the overall entitlement offer, Aristocrat will issue up to just over 31.1 million new shares.

The Playtech acquisition is also to be funded with AUD1.1 billion in existing cash, and new debt consisting of a AUD2.8 billion term loan.

On Monday, Aristocrat said it expected the acquisition of Playtech to be completed in the second quarter of 2022, “subject to certain antitrust, foreign investment, gaming regulatory and financial regulatory consents and approvals being obtained.”