Playtech notifies of rebound offer from TTB Hong Kong

Playtech Plc has shed further light on yesterday’s general meeting of investors that failed to approve Aristocrat Leisure’s £2.7 billion offer to acquire the FTSE250 technology group outright – a deal recommended by the board of directors.

Further to yesterday’s GM, Playtech’s board was contacted by Hong Kong investment fund TTB Partners Limited ‘on behalf of an investor group’.

The Hong Kong fund has requested to be released from ‘restrictions under Rule 2.8 of the Code’ in order to propose a fresh bid for Playtech – a request that has been granted by Playtech’s board.

Bid restrictions had been placed on TTB as the fund’s Gopher Investments vehicle had formally dropped out of Playtech’s original bid pursuit on 19 November. Under Rule 2.8 of the City Code on Mergers and Acquisitions, withdrawn parties must wait 6 months to propose a new offer.

Gopher withdrew its bid for Playtech in order to acquire the FTSE’s firm’s Finalto FX trading unit for $250 million – a requirement that needed to be met for Playtech governance to proceed with any sale of the company.

“There can be no certainty as to whether this will result in an offer for the Company, nor as to the terms on which any offer might be made.  However, any offer, if made, is likely to be in cash.” – read Playtech’s morning statement.

Yesterday investor GM saw Playtech governance secure 54% of votes cast by shareholders below the 75% threshold needed to approve Aristocrat Leisure’s £2.7 billion cash and shares offer – a deal that aimed to create global gambling biggest land-based and digital technology, supplier.

As reported, Aristocrat’s bid was rejected by a ‘collective of Asian investors’, formed by former Playtech chief executive Tom Hall and Birmingham City owner Carson Yeung, billionaire heiress Karen Lo and finance magnate Stanley Choi.

In light of Aristocrat’s rejected offer, Playtech Chairman Brian Mattingley responded that the board would review alternative options, as the “process had shone a spotlight on the fundamental premium value of Playtech’s businesses.

Meanwhile, market analysts have reacted positively to the failed deal outcome, as London capital markets advisory  Peel Hunt marked Playtech’s shareprice as a ‘strong buy’ recommendation, upgrading the FTSE group’s target price to 680-to-700p.

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