Scientific Games drops bid to buy remaining SciPlay stake

Scientific Games has withdrawn its all-stock offer to acquire the remaining 19 per cent equity interest in its SciPlay social gaming division.

In July 2021, the company had proposed to purchase all SciPlay shares that it did not own, at an estimated value of around $2 billion. The decision to withdraw the proposal will see the corporation retain its 81 per cent economic interest and 98 per cent voting interest in SciPlay.

Previously the social division of Scientific Games, SciPlay became an independent business in 2019.

“In line with our approach to capital management and disciplined M&A we have decided that continuing to pursue this opportunity would not be prudent for our shareholders at this time,” Scientific Games president and chief executive Barry Cottle said. “We remain committed to our strategy of leveraging our unparalleled portfolio of hit franchises, world-class talent and premium content engine to develop great games fully cross-platform.

“SciPlay remains a strategic asset and has the opportunity to drive meaningful value as it grows its social casino market share and expands into the $20bn casual genre leveraging its expertise in engagement and monetization. We will continue to invest in this sector in a disciplined manner. Importantly, as we advance our strategy, we will continue to take a holistic approach to capital management as we focus on allocating capital to drive growth in earnings per share.”

Scientific Games has made numerous moves in recent months, including the acquisition of Swedish games developer Elk Studios in December 2021, nth and casino solutions provider Authentic Gaming in November 2021, the latter of which signified the company’s first foray into the live casino market.

The corporation announced last summer that it would be divesting its sports betting and lottery businesses to focus on digital operations.

Since then, it has agreed to sell its lottery business to Canadian private equity company Brookfield Business Partners, and its sports betting division to Endeavor.

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