Sky sells controlling stake in online gambling business to CVC

By David Cook
Broadcaster Sky has sold a controlling stake in its online gaming brand Sky Bet to private equity firm CVC Capital Partners in a deal worth up to £800m.

The deal, which values Sky Bet at 15 times its EBITDA, will see Sky retain a 20% stake in the company.

The Sky Bet name will continue to be used by CVC as part of a long-term licensing agreement between the two companies.

The terms of the purchase will see Sky receive £600m in cash, before a further payment of £120m at a later stage.

The deal, which is yet to be cleared by regulators in the UK and Ireland, is expected to be closed in the first quarter of 2015.

Jeremy Darroch, group chief executive of Sky said: “In the last ten years, we have successfully grown Sky Bet from a start-up to one of the leading online betting and gaming companies in the UK. This transaction will allow us to focus further on the substantial growth opportunities in our core international pay TV business while realising significant value for our shareholders.”

"We are delighted to have agreed to acquire a controlling stake in Sky Bet,” said CVC managing partner Rob Lucas. “Richard Flint and his team have built a fantastic business, which is a leader in the fast growing mobile and online, betting and gaming markets.”

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