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Rank/888 offer of £3.6bn for William Hill emerges

It h

WilliamHill
as been reported that Rank Group and 888 Holdings have submitted a collective bid to purchase William Hill, giving the operator a valuation of up to £3.6bn.

According to the Financial Times, the offer is worth 364p per William Hill share, though merger syneriges would increase the value to 408p a share, with the information coming from two people briefed on the plans.

All three parties are remaining quiet on the situation for the time being, but this follows confirmation from Rank and 888 in July that they were considering a joint offer, though made it clear that no formal bid had been made, while William Hill said it “would listen to and consider any proposal which might be forthcoming from the consortium.”

That followed an announcement from William Hill in the previous week that James Henderson was to leave the position of CEO and had been replaced on an interim basis by CFO Philip Bowcock.

William Hill’s market cap at the time of writing is £2.89bn, according to Yahoo Finance, and a combined group of all three companies would form a collective market cap of approximately £4.51bn, higher than Paddy Power Betfair’s £3.98bn value.

888 and William Hill attempted to create a deal last year for the latter to buy the former, but it was reported that a key 888 stakeholder would not agree to an offer of around £700m.

William Hill has missed out on the M & A trend in the UK recently, with Paddy Power Betfair forming in February and Ladbrokes and Gala Coral on track to complete their merger in the autumn, should they be able to comply with the Competition and Markets Authority’s ruling that they must sell 350-400 shops.
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