Fred Done acquires 3% stake in US ‘front-runners’ William Hill

William Hill

Betfred owner Fred Done has purchased a three per cent share in rival bookmaker William Hill, with Done emphasising that this will help the independent bookmaker strengthen its position in the US market.

Following the announcement, shares in William Hill climbed one point, rising 4.55p above their closing price on Friday, before dropping by approximately three per cent to 129.45p on Monday afternoon.

Done, who has not yet confirmed whether he plans to increase his stake in the operator, told the Racing Post: “I’ve bought Hills shares because they are massively undervalued and in my opinion when it comes to the US they are front-runners.”

Over recent months, Betfred has been capitalising on the opportunity presented by the post-PASPA US market, having launched sportsbooks in both Colorado and Iowa, as well as securing an agreement with Scientific Games to go live in Pennsylvania.

Scientific Games was selected as the technology provider to launch retail solutions at Wind Creek Casino in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, in the first half of 2020 as part of Betfred’s partnership with the property. 

In advance of the 2020-2021 NFL season, Betfred and Scientific Games plan to launch digital sports betting for the state’s bettors.

Meanwhile, William Hill has also been strengthening its foothold in the US, having gone live in 9 of the fourteen states which have legalised sports betting.

As confirmed in its full-year 2019 results, William Hill US handled $2.9bn of gross amounts wagered, either directly or indirectly, 55 per cent of which was placed through online channels, while the operator also revealed it had handled one in four bets across the US.