Sky offloads online betting business Sky Bet for £800m to private equity firm CVC Capital

Lynsey Barber
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Sky Bet goes to CVC Partners in £800m deal (Source: Getty)

Sky has sold off the majority of its online betting business Sky Bet to private equity firm CVC Capital for £800m to concentrate on its new Europe-wide TV business.

The deal will net Sky £600m in cash and a further deferred £120m, giving CVC Capital an 80 per cent stake in the business. Sky has also agreed a license for CVC to use the brand name for an unspecified sum, but Sky said the deal values the firm at £800m.

The Leeds-headquartered business, created by Sky in 2001, will retain the management team and staff under the new structure.

Sky boss Jeremy Darroch said: "In the last 10 years, we have successfully grown Sky Bet from a start-up to one of the leading online betting and gaming companies in the UK. This transaction will allow us to focus further on the substantial growth opportunities in our core international pay TV business while realising significant value for our shareholders."

The deal is a sign of the media firm consolidating its business to focus on the newly renamed BSkyB’s European business which covers the UK and Ireland, Germany, Italy and Austria after buying Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland in a deal worth £7bn.

The cash pile might go some way to reducing the firm's post-deal debt, which the credit ratings agencies Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s expects to stand at around £7.9bn by June 2015.

Sky's share price ticked up 1.3 per cent in early trading.

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