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Betsson Acquires betFIRST And Forms Strategic Partnership With Groupe Partouche For Belgian Market

Updated: Sep 19, 2023

Betsson Acquires betFIRST And Forms Strategic Partnership With Groupe Partouche For Belgian Market

Betsson AB, a prominent iGaming company, has successfully acquired betFIRST, a leading Belgian sports betting and gaming operator, in a deal worth EUR 120 million.

In addition, Betsson has entered into a strategic partnership with Groupe Partouche, a renowned French casino operator, to introduce online casino services in Belgium.

The acquisition of betFIRST aligns with Betsson's growth strategy of expanding into locally regulated markets. The deal involves the purchase of all shares in the betFIRST Group for an upfront consideration of EUR 117 million in cash. There is also a potential earnout payment of up to EUR 3 million, contingent upon meeting specific financial targets. The acquisition price represents a multiple of 10.0x betFIRST's estimated EBITDA for 2023.

Founded in 2011, betFIRST has established itself as a prominent B2C operator in Belgium's regulated online gaming market, offering sports betting and dice games. The company holds licenses for online sports betting and online dice games in Belgium. With a strong brand presence and a track record of successful customer acquisition and revenue growth, betFIRST generated net gaming revenue of EUR 51.2 million and adjusted EBITDA of EUR 10.0 million in the last fiscal year.

Betsson's strategic partnership with Groupe Partouche combines their respective strengths to create a compelling online casino offering tailored to the Belgian market. Groupe Partouche, a leader in land-based casinos in France and Switzerland, possesses an offline casino license in Belgium that can be expanded to cover online operations. Subject to obtaining the necessary licenses from Belgian regulators, the plan is to launch the online casino offering in Belgium in 2023. Both Betsson and Groupe Partouche aim to nurture their collaboration and explore additional avenues for growth.

Pontus Lindwall, CEO and President of Betsson AB, expressed enthusiasm about entering the Belgian market alongside their partners. He highlighted the strategic fit of acquiring betFIRST and emphasized Betsson's scalable business model. Lindwall affirmed that these initiatives would contribute to revenue growth and bolster profitability over time.

The acquisition of betFIRST and the partnership with Groupe Partouche will grant Betsson access to the competitive Belgian market, expand its geographical presence, and increase its revenue share from locally regulated markets. Betsson plans to maintain the betFIRST sports betting business while seeking potential synergies in the future.

The acquisition is expected to be completed on or around July 5, 2023, without being subject to regulatory approvals. Betsson has engaged Lazard as its financial advisor and Gernandt & Danielsson, along with Van Bael & Bellis and Edson Legal as legal advisors in Belgium, to facilitate the acquisition. The transaction will be financed using existing cash from Betsson's balance sheet and available credit facilities.


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