Yesterday it was announced that the proposed Ladbrokes Coral Merger would proceed following the combined sale of betting shops to meet regulatory requirements.
Ladbrokes Coral Merger Approved by CMA
The proposed merger has finally been approved by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).
The merger had been almost approved by the CMA subject to Ladbrokes and Gala Coral have agreeing to sell 359 betting shops to rival bookmakers to meet the regulators requirements. This week Coral and Coral said they would sell 322 shops to Betfred for £55m in cash and a further 37 to Stan James for £500,000. After the merger, Coral will sell 174 shops and Ladbrokes will sell 185.
The CMA had previously stated that the two firms would have to sell approximately 400 betting shops. That was required in order to comply with localised competition requirements.
With this recent news yesterday afternoon, Wednesday 26th October, the CMA approved the merger. A spokesman for Ladbrokes said the merger would be completed in the very near future. The deal is worth £2.7 billion pounds. Ladbrokes Chief Executive said: “Both businesses are approaching the merger with good momentum and we are now focusing on completing the merger and delivering on the opportunities it offers.”
William Hill will now be overtaken as the largest bookmaking firm in the UK. The Ladbrokes Coral merger will create the largest bookmaker in the UK. Coral runs 1,850 betting shops and Ladbrokes operate 2,200 across the UK.
Ladbrokes shareholders had approved the merger back in November 2015. The combined company would seek to list its shares on the London Stock Exchange. Ladbrokes is already listed but Coral is a privately owned company. The new name of the combined company has not yet been announced.
Update: The deal finally went through and the new organisation is known as Ladbrokes Coral Group PLC.
Earlier this week it was announced that the proposed merger of William Hill with Canadian online gambling company Amaya would not be proceeding. William Hill was unable to obtain the full backing of its shareholders.