Betfred owner Fred Done will most likely give his approval for the upcoming Caesars’ takeover of William Hill’s US operations, The Standard has reported.
Done Expected to Give His ‘Aye’ During Shareholder Meeting This Week
Fred Done, Betfred’s owner, is tipped to say yes in the pending £2.9 billion acquisition of William Hill by Caesars Entertainment when shareholders meet later this week, reports The Telegraph. According to the media outlet, Done, who owns 6% of William Hill’s shares and is effectively the largest private shareholder, will back the transfer of assets, a move that was already recommended by William Hill’s board of directors.
Done has taken time to consider all scenarios, including the option to outbid Caesars, but is now reportedly inclined to see through the transfer of the company’s US assets under Caesars’ banner. While Done may not want to bid against Caesars for the US share of the portfolio, he may yet make a move for the remaining William Hill assets internationally.
Several companies have expressed interest in purchasing the remainder of the business outside the United States, including the flagship casino and betting operations at home in the United Kingdom and other international markets William Hill is currently represented in.
Any potential deal should include Mr Green, another established casino brand owned by William Hill. Potential buyers have lined up, and not least Apollo Global Management, Apax Partners. GVC and 888 Holdings have shown similar interest in acquiring assets, especially amid GVC’s recent rebranding as Entain and focus on legal brands and markets.
Despite Done’s rumored approval, William Hill is not too close to changing hands to Caesars. The companies will have to wait until some point in the first half of 2021 before Caesars finalizes its takeover.
The news comes ahead of a planned shareholder meeting in London on Thursday, November 19, with all shareholders expected to green-light the deal and allow Caesars to carry on with the bid.