Playtech plays ball with rival Best Gaming Technology

Jessica Morris
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An employee of Playtech, a London based...
Playtech bought 90 per cent of BGT (Source: Getty)

Playtech has taken a punt on rival operator Best Gaming Technology (BGT) as it strives to digitise.

Playtech said today that it had bought 90 per cent of BGT for €138m (£114.8m), with the option to buy the firm's remaining shares at a later date.

It comes eight months after firm, which was founded by Israeli billionaire Teddy Sagi, was forced to give up on bid for Plus500 following regulatory concerns.

The London-listed company's shares shot up 6.68 per cent to 873p per share at the open.

BGT's founder and chief executive, Dr. Armin Sageder, held onto the remaining 10 per cent, and will stay at the company for at least three years following the deal's completion.

Playtech supplies some of the most profitable bookmakers in the UK and Spain, including Betfred, Codere, Coral, Ladbrokes, Paddy Power Betfair and William Hill.

BGT made a pre-tax profit of €6m last year. It came on revenues of €41.6m which came exclusively from regulated markets.

Mor Weizer, chief executive Officer of Playtech, said: "We believe that the future of gaming is for retail operators to digitise their offering, creating a simple and intuitive experience for customers as well as creating an opportunity to extend beyond retail and into online, including web and mobile."

"This follows the same trends we see in other commercial sectors around the world with the modernisation and digitisation of betting shops not only improving the retail experience but also adding a whole new channel as it integrates into an online offering."

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