FDJ offers to buy online gambling firm Kindred for $2.7 billion
French gambling giant La Française des Jeux (FDJ) has offered to acquire online betting firm Kindred for 27.95 billion Swedish kronor (about $2.67 billion).
Both parties confirmed the widely anticipated news on Monday, with FDJ saying it hoped to “create a European gaming champion” and become the continent’s second-largest operator, with the takeover.
The offer for Kindred, a Swedish-listed firm that operates the brands Unibet, 32Red and Bingo.com, is being made at 130 kronor ($12.4) per share in cash. That represents an approximate 24% premium over its last share price on Friday, according to a Kindred statement.
FDJ bills itself as one of the world’s largest gaming operators, offering a range of gambling activities from lotteries and poker games to sports and horse-race betting. The company is listed in Paris.
The deal would help the French group gain access to Kindred’s customer base of more than 30 million across Europe, North America and Australia. It would help FDJ significantly scale its international business, with its current share of overseas gross gaming revenue projected to rise from 6% to approximately 20%, should the deal go through.
It would also help FDJ quickly bolster its digital presence, with the share of gross gaming revenue coming from its online business set to rise from 14% to 29% after the proposed merger, it said.
The offer has been unanimously supported by both boards of directors, according to FDJ.
Kindred urged its shareholders on Monday to accept the tender offer, which will officially launch to investors on February 19 for up to nine months, before facing regulatory approvals.
“I’m delighted with today’s transaction announcement between FDJ and Kindred, creating a leading European gaming operator with the financial and strategic capabilities to further expand its global footprint,” Kindred CEO Nils Andén said in the statement.