Tote for sale: Online gambling business update
The big talk in UK online gaming circles is the sale of The Tote, the UK government-owned sportsbook that operates CAP Listed Program Totesport.
Betfred and Sports Investment Partners are the two remaining bidders, and the value has been estimated at about £230 million by the Financial Times.
“Betfred sees its bid as strong because it offers the sum in cash and not on flotation,” Sky News reports. Should Sports Investment Partners win the bidding, it plans to float the tote on the public stock exchange.
“Ultimately, if Betfred wins, it seems like the two companies will merge and will result in between 100-150 job losses for tote staff in our head office,” explains Dean Leyland of Totesport Affiliates. “If SIP wins, jobs are secure and the tote brand will be kept in tact.”
KAX Media is the company that has purchased Gamlbing.com, sold at a loss by News Corporation last week, as we reported here. The company has offices in New York and Shanghai and could be positioning itself for an aggressive move into the U.S. market if regulations occur. Either that, or its simply investing in some high-power virtual real estate.
Founded in 2006, KAX Media is in the business of publishing “digital content for the online gambling industry,” according to a news release. “Recently KAX has launched CasinoSource.co.uk and CasinoSource.ie to expand into the online casino vertical. KAX Media’s domain experience in online gaming player acquisition and vast experience in driving and converting targeted traffic enable it to offer iGaming operators a deep source of player acquisition in regulated markets.”
The two companies had been disputing the terms of a prior deal in which William Hill attempted to prevent Playtech, the software provider behind William Hill Online, from offering igaming software to Hill’s rival, Ladbrokes.
“Under the terms of the resolution, Playtech will now be permitted to licence its software to another unnamed UK operator, believed to be Ladbrokes,” reports EGR.
Bet365 looks to Australia
CAP Listed Program Bet365 has applied for a license to offer online sports betting in Australia. “If the Australian regulator approves Bet365 it is thought the company could begin trading as early as November,” writes James Bennett at EGR. “It would also be its first sports betting licence outside the UK.”
“The Australian gaming market, including land-based venues, has the world’s highest loss per gambling adult over the age of 17 ahead of Singapore and Ireland, according to H2 Gambling Capital, with close to US$1,300 lost per person in 2010.”
Bet365 isn’t the only company eyeing the Aussie market. Daily Mail columnist Geoff Foster says Sportingbet’s pending acquisition of Centrebet “would give it 33 per centof the Australian online betting market.”