BoyleSports Interested in Buying William Hill UK Assets

A new name has entered the bid to buy the William Hill betting shops seen around the UK. BoyleSports are the latest company to declare their interest, but they face a fair amount of opposition.

William Hill was taken over by US gambling business Caesars’ Entertainment earlier this year. After the £2.9 billion deal was completed, they announced that their intention to concentrate on the US side of the business not that in the UK.

Their CEO IS Tom Reeg, and his view is that “I can’t tell you we’re good at running a non-US digital business.” Now they are aiming to sell the UK assets which include around 1,400 betting shops. It’s believed that the sale of these assets will bring in around £1.5 billion.

BoyleSports are a successful Irish bookmakers but in terms of the UK, they haven’t that great a presence. Purchasing the William Hill UK assets would change all of that. The company has said that they are interested in “acquiring some or all of William Hill’s UK shops.”

A BoyleSports spokesperson stated that any “opportunity that makes sense for our business” would be something that they would consider.” They added: “We have made no secret of our ambition to be one of the principal operators on the UK high street and believe that our retail and digital offerings represent a best in class, safe, and enjoyable proposition for the betting public.

At present, BoyleSports have 21 betting shops in the UK and 45 in Northern Ireland. Their online site has, according to their spokesperson given BoyleSports “a sizeable foothold in the UK retail and online markets.” Now that the William Hill UK assets are up for grabs, BoyleSports see this as “a rare opportunity to achieve the retail scale we have been targeting.”
The Irish bookmakers are used to seeing close races and one looks likely in the race to buy the UK assets of William Hill. Apollo Global Management have already expressed their interest in purchasing the assets.

If William Hill hadn’t been sold to Caesars Entertainment, then they were the ones likely to be the purchasers. They showed such a level of interest that they even got the chance to look at the company books.

It was an uphill battle for them though as William Hill had begun to work with Caesars as the US gambling business began to expand. With the UK assets now being sold, they may well fancy a second chance at making a purchase.

888 Holding have enjoyed great success online with their sportsbook and casino. Their founding shareholders, the Shaked family have expressed their interest in a deal. Flutter is already a big player in the UK market as they own the Paddy Power betting shops. Their CEO is Peter Jackson and he’s said they are always interested in anything that would see them able to expand their retail business.