Pacific Consortium sweetens Tatts acquisition offer

Private equity group Pacific Consortium has sweetened its offer for the proposed takeover of Tatts Group, making an all cash bid of A$7.2 billion, or A$4.21 cash per Tatts share.

Last year, Tatts Group rejected the consortium’s cash-and-shares offer, which valued the lotteries giant at A$3.40 per share cash for the lotteries business and shares in a spinoff wagering company the consortium values at A$1 to A$1.60 a share.

Tatts Group said at the time that it concluded it did not find the Pacific Consortium’s proposal to be superior to the proposed Tabcorp merger.

In its latest filing, Tatts Group said it is now assessing how the new proposal compares with the one offered by Tabcorp last year.  

In October, Tabcorp agreed to acquire the lottery operator in a A$11.3 billion ($8.7 billion) merger that would see the formation of a gambling giant in Australia.

"At this time, shareholders do not need to take any action in response to the revised indicative proposal and should not assume that the revised indicative proposal will result in an offer or transaction," Tatts said in a statement.

One of Tatts Group’s shareholders, Sandon Capital, which previously argued the lotteries business has been undervalued in the Tabcorp offer, said the latest bid would put pressure on the Tatts board to open its books to the Pacific Consortium in the absence of a higher offer, according the Australian Financial Review. "This looks like it is clearly designed to get the board to give them due diligence. We now have the beginning of a bidding war," said Sandon's managing director, Gabriel Radzyminski.

Tatts said that its directors continue to recommend the merger proposal with Tabcorp in the absence of a superior proposal and subject to an independent expert's assessment.

More news from this jurisdiction

AustraliaMonday, Feb 19, 2018

Nick Xenophon, an Australian politician and anti-gambling crusader, has modified his previously hardline approach to the pokies industry, backing away from earlier pledges to push for an all out ban in South Australia.

AustraliaThursday, Feb 08, 2018

Australian gambling operator Tabcorp Holdings on Thursday said its statutory net profit fell more than 50 percent in the first half of the 2018 financial year.

AustraliaTuesday, Feb 06, 2018

The Gaming Technologies Association (GTA) said they “welcomed” the results of the federal court case which accused Aristocrat and Crown of misleading gamblers with deceptive slot machines.

AustraliaMonday, Feb 05, 2018

Accepting and paying out bets in cryptocurrency will soon be banned for operators licensed in the Northern Territory, after the gaming authority released a warning to bookmakers on Friday.

AustraliaSunday, Feb 04, 2018

The Alliance for Gambling Reform is calling for a complete ban on political donations from the gaming industry, after recent disclosures revealed more than A$1.5 million was donated to major political parties in 2016/17.

AustraliaFriday, Feb 02, 2018

The court case against Australian-listed Crown Resorts and slot machine supplier Aristocrat over claims they had given gamblers misleading information about the chances of winning was dismissed in federal court on Friday.

AustraliaTuesday, Jan 30, 2018

A high level of demand for exhibitor space at the Australasian Gaming Expo 2018 has already seen 76 percent of exhibitor space sold, seven months prior to the event opening on August 14.