Blackstone eyes ‘IPO on the horizon’ for CIRSA

A year following its €2 billion acquisition of Grupo CIRSA, US private equity fund Blackstone Group, is reported to be assessing ‘future options’ for the Spanish market gambling group.

Spanish business news source Economia Digital, reports that Blackstone eyes an ‘IPO on the horizon’ for its CIRSA vehicle.

Blackstone, which maintains one of gambling’s biggest investment portfolios, is reported to be ‘accelerating’ CIRSA’s opportunity to go public, changing the firms reporting structures and by further ‘fattening its asset’.

Supporting IPO movements, CIRSA governance is reported to have ‘adapted to stock market routines’, securing a new bond issue and eligibility with ratings agencies.

Furthermore, this May, Blackstone acquired Spanish slot machine and gaming hall operator Giga Games, for an undisclosed fee, an asset that will be absorbed by CIRSA.

Under Blackstone ownership, CIRSA has laid-out clearly its corporate ambitions of becoming the ‘leading global Spanish language gambling firm’, with CIRSA governance reported to have allocated ‘€180 million towards investments each year’.

In its report, Economia Digital, details that CIRSA Chief Executive Joaquim Agut is overseeing an operating strategy to maximise the firm’s IPO value.

In Spain, CIRSA seeks to aggressively increase its ‘24% market share’, expanding retail betting points across new provinces, and taking advantage of embattled competitor Grupo Codere’s weakening position.

Meanwhile, In LATAM markets, CIRSA governance explores new opportunities in which to expand its casino network, targeting openings in the Dominican Republic, Panama and Mexico.

Finally, Agut is detailed to have implemented a review of CIRSA’s Spanish bingo hall division, which has reported declines in recent years, assessing whether to sell or transform retail units.

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