Ending a 15-month absence from the country, Entain has re-entered the Dutch online sports betting market via its finalised takeover of local firm BetCity.nl.
BetCity is the operating brand of BetEnt, which was acquired by Entain last June for an initial consideration of €300m (£257m), with a balancing payment due to be made once the company’s 2022 value is confirmed.
As it stands, Entain is set to pay €450m (£399m) for its new Dutch holding, with a maximum consideration capped at €850m (£753m) dependent on BetCity’s performance.
Jette Nygaard-Andersen, Entain CEO, said: “We are pleased to have completed the acquisition of BetCity. The combination of BetCity’s local expertise and strong brand, alongside Entain’s global scale and market-leading platform provides customers with an enriched and broader offering of engaging products, fresh content and new experiences.
“This transaction further underpins our growth strategy of operating in, and expanding further into, attractive regulated markets. We look forward to working with Melvin and the BetCity team as we execute on the significant opportunities in the Dutch market.”
Upon initial announcement last year, Entain stated that a deferred contingent consideration of up to €550m (£472m) could be paid dependent upon BetCity’s full evaluation.
In its update today, the group revealed that the continent payment will be made in early 2024, and is based on 10x BetCity’s EBITDA for the 2023 financial year, less amounts already paid out.
Furthermore, a final continent payment of €50m (£44m) will be paid on delivery of synergies and successful migration of BetCity onto Entain’s platform, where it will sit alongside its existing European sportsbook brands of Ladbrokes, Coral, bwin, Sportingbet, Eurobet, Crystalbet and Stadium.
Entain predicts that BetCity will prove a fruitful acquisition complimenting its brand portfolio, having built up a share of around 20% in the ‘attractive fast-growing market’ of the Netherlands.
The FTSE100 gambling group also expects cost synergies of around €28m (£25m) from technology, content and royalties as a result of the combination by the end of 2016.
Entain had to exit the Netherlands in October 2021 after the implementation of the new KOA Act licensing regime, which approved the licences of 10 operators, and forced all other firms to vacate the country and apply for new operating permits.
In the months since agreeing to acquire BetCity, Entain further expanded its portfolio by launching a new Central and Eastern European (CEE) division by finalising its takeover of SuperSport in November 2022.