O Shaked family sells entire stake in 888 Holdings

Shares in FTSE250 online gambling group 888 Holdings have tumbled following reports that the O Shaked family have sold their entire stake in the company this week.

Yesterday the O Shaked Share Trust, which represents family members of deceased 888 Co-Founder Aharon Shaked initiated a sell-off of 46 million shares (12.9% equity) at a target price of 243 pence apiece.

The family trust is reported to have netted approximately £112 million from the share sale. This June, the O Shaked family sold 40 million 888 shares at 270p, earning + £100 million.

Reacting to the O Shaked family sell-off, 888’s share price fell 6% to 242p as of Wednesday’s London market closing time.

The total sell-off sees the family of Avi Shaked (brother of Aharon), maintain the largest stake in 888 Holdings retaining a 24% equity. In 2016, the Ben-Yitzhak brothers reduced their family stake to a 3% holding.

888 has suffered a turbulent 2017, in which the company has been reprimanded for ‘serious failures’ in its social responsibility with regards to its handling of vulnerable customers.

This September the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) fined 888 a record £7.8 million, following its investigation of the operator’s multiple player protection failures.

888 governance would report corporate losses of $17 million for its H1 2017 results, stating that the company had been significantly impacted by ‘exceptional costs’ of +$50 million recorded during the period.

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