Every week, CasinoBeats breaks down the numbers behind some of the industry’s most fascinating stories. In a week that began with news of a $1.2bn acquisition of NeoGames by Aristocrat, the M&A theme continued through the week as the US became a hotbed once again. Elsewhere, a key resignation hit Kindred, the Advertising Standards Authority upheld its own complaint against Kwiff and an NHS report on gambling behaviour was published.


Aristocrat entered into a definitive combination agreement that will see the group acquire NeoGames for $29.50 per share, which represents a total value of approximately $1.2bn.

The ASX-listed group has consistently maintained lofty online gaming ambitions after a lengthy $2.7bn Playtech pursuit collapsed in early 2022, while the past year also saw NeoGames bolster its own operations via the $470m acquisition of Aspire Global.

The transaction was unanimously approved by NeoGames, which will merge with a wholly owned subsidiary of Aristocrat and become a privately-held company that is no longer listed on any public market.

The purchase price represents a premium of approximately 104 per cent over the volume weighted average price of NeoGames’ shares for the three months ending on May 12, 2023, the last trading day prior to the announcement.


Finland’s National Police Board issued a conditional fine of €2.4m, as well as a marketing activity prohibition order, to Betsson subsidiary BML Group.

In the statement, the police board noted that BML had targeted customers in mainland Finland across multiple channels “for an extensive period”, posting material online that “directly or indirectly promote the sales of gambling services” in the country, which is not allowed under the Finnish Lotteries Act.

The act states that companies that don’t hold a licence under the Lotteries Act are prohibited from marketing to the country’s mainland, where a monopoly on gaming, betting and lottery is held by state-owned firm Veikkaus.

The law enforcement agency noted that BML had been given several chances to present a statement regarding the activity, and although the company did “introduce some changes related to the marketing channels it uses”, the marketing in the mainland continued.


René Jansen, Chair of the Kansspelautoriteit, reiterated that “crime should not pay” amid a vow of continuing to “to hit companies where it hurts” regarding violations of Dutch online gaming legislation.

“It must pay off for providers of games of chance to offer their games legally,” Jansen wrote in his latest blog post, asserting that a penalty package policy adopted when the online market opened on October 1, 2021, “has led to good results”.

“It must pay off for providers of games of chance to offer their games legally. That is only possible if we punish illegal supply harshly,” he noted.

Backing an approach that sees threats issued via an order subject to periodic penalty payments, Jansen reiterated that the regulator is not averse to taking firm action


As the nation dwells on the Gambling Act white paper, a report into the impact of gambling behaviour and problem gambling in the UK has been published by the NHS

Looking into gambling participation, the report published statistics that have drawn some parallels with the insights made in a recent survey from the UK Gambling Commission

According to the health service, 0.3 per cent of the UK population are considered to be ‘engaging in problem gambling’ according to Problem Gambling Severity Index results, while 2.8 per cent  can be identified as ‘engaging in at-risk’ gambling behaviour.

Meanwhile, the UKGC’s quarterly telephone survey published its own statistics, placing the UK’s problem gambling rate at 0.2 per cent as of February 2023, a decrease of 0.3 per cent from the previous quarter. 


Light & Wonder made its desire to obtain full ownership of SciPlay public, with a valuation of $20 per share seeing the group look to acquire the remaining 17 per cent interest in an all-cash $422m transaction.

Currently, the group owns approximately 83 per cent of the economic and 98 per cent of the voting interest in SciPlay, with the proposal representing an enterprise value of $2.1bn and a premium of 28.5 per cent based on the stock price at the close of business on May 17, 2023.

Following the transaction, SciPlay would become a wholly owned subsidiary of Light & Wonder.


Nils Andén has been appointed as Interim CEO by the Kindred Group board of directors after Henrik Tjärnström handed in his resignation, effective immediately.

Taking up the position, Andén stressed a “strong belief” in the organisation’s business model, in addition to asserting confidence in building on a solid foundation in unleashing the operator’s potential moving forward.

The outgoing Chief Executive brings an end to a near 13 year stint in the role, which began in July 2010 when he stepped up CFO and Deputy CEO duties that began in March 2008.

He began his tenure at the firm under its original identity of the Unibet group in 2003 as a Non-Executive Director and member of the firm’s Audit Committee


Vici Properties disclosed a third international investment after entering into definitive agreements to purchase the real estate assets of a quartet of gaming establishments in a sale and leaseback arrangement.

This will see the real estate investment trust acquire Alberta’s Century Casino & Hotel Edmonton, Century Casino St. Albert, Century Mile Racetrack and Casino, and Century Downs Racetrack and Casino from Century Casinos for C$221.7m (US$164.7m) in cash.

The transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals and closing conditions and is expected to close in the second half of 2023.


The Advertising Standards Authority upheld its own challenge after it discovered that an advertisement for Kwiff was seen within a news article regarding junior blues on the Portsmouth FC website.

The ad in question, seen on December 15, 2022, featured an advert for the Book of Dead slot game, comprising free spins offers and an ‘18+ new customers only’ accompanying text. 

In response to if the ad was appropriately targeted, Eaton Gate Gaming, trading as Kwiff, informed that it was in fact displayed in the news section, as opposed to junior blues membership pages and associated areas dedicated to children and young people.

It was also explained that due to its dynamic nature, the content and its location alternated depending on the viewer’s online behaviour, the data obtained by the technology used and the advertiser.