CVC confirms approach for Betfair

Private equity firm CVC Capital Partners this morning confirmed that it was considering a takeover bid for online gambling site Betfair, pushing the company's shares up 14 per cent.

CVC said it had held preliminary discussions with investors Richard Koch and Antony Ball regarding options in respect of Betfair.

Koch, a co-founder of international strategy consultancy LEK Consulting, holds a 6.5 percent stake in Betfair. Ball is a non-executive director at Luxembourg-listed investment group Brait and is the co-founder of its private equity business.

Betfair responded by urging investors to sit tight: "There can be no certainty that an offer will be made or as to the terms on which any offer might be made. In the meantime, shareholders are strongly advised to take no action."

Gerald Corbett, chairman of Betfair, added: "With our new team now in place and the announcement of a more focused strategy in December, I believe Betfair is currently going through one of the most exciting phases in its development.