CVC to use leveraged loans in Sky Bet acquisition

By David Cook
Private equity firm CVC Capital Partners will finance its acquisition of a controlling stake in online operator Sky Bet with £390m in leveraged loans, according to Reuters.

An announcement was made in December that CVC would acquire 80% of Sky Bet from UK TV broadcaster Sky in a deal worth up to £800m, with the terms of the agreement allowing the operator to keep its Sky Bet name and Sky retaining 20% of the business.

CVC will pay Sky £600m in cash at completion of the deal and further deferred and contingent considerations up to the value of £120m.

The total price of £800m values Sky at 15 times its EBITDA.

The loans will be made up of £340m in first lien loans and £50m of revolver, while leverage on the deal totals 5.25 times.

Sky Bet generated revenue of £182m in the year to 30 June 2014, giving it a profit of £50m.

The deal is set to close in the first quarter of 2015, with Goldman Sachs expected to lead the debt financing to fund CVC.

The debt financing is due to launch for syndication to institutional investors and a bank meeting is set to take place next week, with other banks likely to join the deal before that meeting.

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