Caesars Palace

Caesars Entertainment expects to finalise its impending acquisition of William Hill on Thursday 1 April 2021, with it anticipated that all remaining regulatory approvals are to be finalised in the coming weeks.

The US casino operator’s £2.9bn ($3.7bn) takeover bid of the entire issued and to be issued share capital of William Hill was confirmed in September 2020, just months after the firm secured its long awaited $17bn merger with Eldorado Resorts.

Subsequently gaining approval from the applicable shareholders, the final quarter of last year saw Caesars begin to pursue the state-by-state regulatory approval of the takeover by US regulatory authorities.

This morning William Hill disclosed that Caesars current expectation is that the ‘remaining approvals required to be obtained from the relevant US gaming authorities and the relevant other gaming authorities will be obtained on or about March 23, 2021’.

In light of proceedings, Caesars and William Hill have established a Scheme Court Hearing to take place on March 30, as the final regulatory hearing to sanction the takeover, ensuring the deal’s legal certainty. Should all regulatory hurdles be cleared, both parties anticipate completing the transaction on April 1.

Dubbed a “historic acquisition” at the time initial agreement being reached, the bookmaker had confirmed the receipt of two proposals, the second of which came from US private equity fund Apollo Global Management.

Long asserting an expectation to finalise the purchase in the second half of 2021, Caesars believes that the enlarged online gaming and sports businesses to be created as a result of the deal could generate in the region of $600m-$700m in net revenue during this year.

The agreement builds upon a current US joint venture operated by Caesars and William Hill, with 20 per cent and 80 per cent equity ownership, respectively, which the former believes needs to be broadened in scope in order to be fully maximising across the betting and gaming ecosystem.

In order to maximise and support the wider business propositions offered by William Hill, following completion Caesars is to seek suitable partners or owners who have aligned objectives and approaches, and who will be focused on the longer-term ambitions of those businesses.