Tuesday 22. December, 2015

Paddy Power and Betfair Shareholders Approve Merger

Paddy Power shareholders voted to approve the proposed merger between the Irish bookmaker and UK-based sportsbook, Betfair at their EGM that was held in Dublin. Betfair’s shareholder also voted overwhelmingly in support of the deal, allowing the talks to go forward to create the €10.2 billion entity.

The next major hurdle to be overcome is regulatory approval and Paddy Power Chief Executive Andy McCue said that he hopes that the Republic’s Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) would approve the deal in time for it to be closed by the end of the first quarter of 2016.

Phase one of the investigation by the commission is due to be completed next month, at which point it can either open phase two of the investigation or reject it. Phase two of the investigation would take up to 90 working days to close.

The Competition and Markets Authority – the UK watchdog – completed phase one of its investigation a day ahead of schedule last week.

The merger will create one of the world’s largest online bookmakers called Paddy Power Betfair. Paddy Power shareholders would hold 52 percent of the new company with Betfair shareholders owning the remaining 48 percent. The companies believe that the merger will result in savings of €70 million per annum with increased returns for their investors.

The new company will be based in Dublin and have a significant presence in Ireland and the UK, although it will have customers in more than 100 countries around the globe. It plans to expand further across continental Europe, the US and Australia and estimates its online business will have more than four millions customers.

Breon Corcoran, current CEO of Betfair will become the CEO of the new company while Andy McCue, current CEO of Paddy Power will become its new COO.

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