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Hydra $HDRA to Acquire Inspired Gaming From Vitruvian Partners for £200M

Hydra $HDRA to Acquire Inspired Gaming From Vitruvian Partners for £200M

Playtech (LSE: PTEC), controlled by Israeli billionaire Teddy Sagi, acquired rival Austrian Best Gaming Technology GmbH for €138 million, in a further sign of industry consolidation. The cash component of the transaction will be funded by a $20 million private placement from Macquarie Capital in addition to Hydra’s $80 million in cash in trust. The balance of the acquisition price will be paid in Hydra common shares to be issued at a price of $10.00 per share. Assuming none of Hydra’s shares are redeemed for cash in trust, the sellers would retain 35% ownership at closing. Certain liabilities of Inspired, including existing credit facilities, are expected to remain in place at closing. Vitruvian acquired Inspired Gaming (formerly Bass Leisure Machine Services) for £134 million and took the company private in July 2010. Inspired is a global games technology company, supplying virtual sports, mobile gaming and server-based gaming systems with associated terminals and digital content to regulated betting and gaming operators around the world. Inspired currently operates more than 25,000 digital gaming terminals and supplies its virtual sports products in more than 30,000 venues and on over 200 websites in 30 countries. Inspired employs over 800 employees in the UK and elsewhere, developing and operating digital games and networks. Inspired’s fiscal year end September 2016 revenue and EBITDA are estimated at $110 million and $38 million, respectively, with the potential to grow meaningfully, driven by a backlog of recurring revenue contracts, Hydra said. Hydra was founded by gaming industry veteran Lorne Weil, the company’s CEO, and raised $80 million on October 29, 2014 in its IPO. Upon closing of the acquisition, Weil will become executive chairman, while Inspired’s founder and CEO Luke Alvarez will continue in his role, in addition to becoming a board member. “We are excited to have the opportunity to partner with Luke and his team as we work together to grow the digital business through increased focus and the deployment of new technology and content,” Weil said. “We are excited to be partnering with Lorne Weil and Hydra, while continuing our strong relationship with Vitruvian, ” said Alvarez. “Lorne’s history in the gaming industry and Hydra’s access to the public capital markets are the perfect combination to take Inspired to the next level.” “We have enjoyed a strong and productive partnership with the management team at Inspired and are delighted to support this transaction, which will facilitate access to capital markets and support the Company in the continued build-out of its market-leading positions,” said Vitruvian partner Philip Russmeyer. The proposed transaction has been unanimously approved by the boards of directors of both Hydra and Inspired, and is expected to close in October 2016, subject to approval by Hydra’s shareholders, required regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. Immediately after the closing, Hydra intends to change its name to Inspired Entertainment, Inc. and will continue to trade on NASDAQ under the ticker INSE. Macquarie Capital acted as M&A Advisor to Hydra. Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP and Mishcon de Reya LLP acted as legal counsel to Hydra. Morgan Stanley acted as M&A Advisor to Inspired. Dickson Minto W.S. and Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP acted as legal counsel to Inspired. Management was advised by Pinsent Masons LLP and Proskauer Rose LLP. Vitruvian is an independent European private equity firm that invests in companies characterized by rapid growth and change, including buyouts and growth capital investments. Vitruvian is currently deploying VIP II, a £1 billion fund, and has offices in London, Munich and Stockholm, as well as a presence on the U.S. West Coast and in China. Target sectors include technology and internet, financial and business services, life sciences and healthcare, media and telecoms.]]>

SoftBank Considering $5B+ Sale of Supercell Mobile Games

SoftBank Considering $5B+ Sale of Supercell Mobile Games

Tencent to Acquire Majority Stake in Supercell from Softbank in $10.2B Deal


Japanese telecommunications giant SoftBank Group Corp. (TYO: 9984) is said to be considering a sale of its Finnish mobile game developer Supercell Oy, Bloomberg reported. SoftBank’s total ownership in Supercell reached 73.2% in June 2015, the company said. Supercell has been reportedly valued at over $5 billion. Supercell is a mobile game company headquartered in Helsinki, Finland, with offices in San Francisco, Tokyo, Seoul and Beijing. Based on its track record of global top selling mobile game titles including “Clash of Clans”, “Hay Day”, and “Boom Beach”, Supercell is a leader in the mobile games industry. Its games are available for tablets and smartphones using both Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android operating systems. The company was founded in 2010 by Ilkka Paananen, CEO, and Mikko Kodisoja. SoftBank had positioned its partnership with Supercell as “core to its mobile content strategy,” said the company in June last year, when it increased its stake in Supercell by acquiring an additional 22.7% holding from outside investors. SoftBank first acquired a 51% stake in Supercell for $1.5 billion in October 2013. Supercell had previously raised $12 million in a Series A funding round led by Accel Partners in 2011, and $130 million in a Series B round led by Index Venures and Institutional Venture Partners (IVP) in April 2013. SoftBank Group Corp. is a Japanese multinational telecommunications and Internet corporation, with operations in broadband, fixed-line telecommunications, e-commerce, Internet, technology services, finance, media and marketing, and other businesses. The company was founded in 1981 and is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. In May 2015, SoftBank was ranked in the Forbes Global 2000 list as the 62nd largest public company in the world. Between 2009 and 2014, SoftBank’s market capitalization increased by 557%, the fourth largest relative increase in the world over that period. At the beginning of 2015, the company was the third largest public company in Japan after Toyota and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial. As of May 13, 2016, SoftBank had a market capitalization of US$61.57 billion. SoftBank’s founder and CEO, Masayoshi Son had a net worth of $13.6 billion according to Forbes as of June 2015, and he is the second richest man in Japan.]]>