The upcoming gambling industry regulatory overhaul in the UK expected after the completion of the ongoing 2005 Gambling Act review does not seem to worry operators much, after another one, BoyleSports, appears willing to expand via the acquisition of William Hill’s retail shops.
“BoyleSports would certainly be interested in acquiring some or all of William Hill’s UK shops, or indeed any other opportunity that makes sense for our business.”Spokesperson, BoyleSports
Potential for Retail Business Expansion
BoyleSports, which currently owns just 21 betting shops in the country, besides another 45 in Northern Ireland, announced a serious interest to acquire some or all of William Hill’s retail assets and expand its presence in the retail sector of the market.
“We have made no secret of our ambition to be one of the principal operators on the UK high street and believe that our retail and digital offerings represents a best in class, safe, and enjoyable proposition for the betting public.”Spokesperson, BoyleSports
BoyleSports is facing serious competition for the 1,400 retail shops in the likes of Entain, after the global gambling group already put itself in the mix of potential buyers, to join private equity firm Apollo Global Management which lost to Caesars Entertainment in the £2.9 billion ($3.7 billion) sale of William Hill, as well as Entain’s UK rivals Flutter Entertainment and Betfred. Gibraltar-based 888 Holdings is also rumored to hold interest in a potential deal.
“We already have 21 shops in the UK which, along with our 45 shops in Northern Ireland and our recently upgraded online betting site, gives us a sizeable foothold in the UK retail and online markets. The sale of the William Hill estate presents us with a rare opportunity to achieve the retail scale we have been targeting.”Spokesperson, BoyleSports
Sale Should Complete within a Year
According to industry analysts, William Hill’s UK business could fetch up to £1.5 billion ($2.1 billion) for Caesars which announced they would offload anything but the US business of the sportsbook operator immediately after completion of the purchase, and the sale process is expected to start by the end of July 2021 and complete by the end of May 2022.
Historically, William Hill turned out to be the perfect expansion vehicle for BoyleSports after the John Boyle-owned group bought all of William Hill’s 33 betting shops in Northern Ireland in January 2020 to become Ireland’s biggest retail bookie.
Expansion efforts for BoyleSports’ UK estate were not always successful for the founded in 1982 Irish gambling company after an unsuccessful bid for the Tote business in 2008 when it lost to local rival Betfred.