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Online Casino News - October, 2008

Will Hill Online Signs Deal With Playtech Software



  Seed Newsvine

by Edward Rogers, News Staff Writer

October 20, 2008

Leading UK online casino, Will Hill and pioneering software developer, Playtech, will be joining forces following the recent divorce between Will Hill and Cryptologic. Call it an affair in which Playtech won the bride, or a coincidental turn of events (Cryptologic is rumored to now be signing with Party Gaming), the fact of the matter - to quote Shakespeare - is all's well that end's well.

The deal between Playtech and Will Hill will make William Hill Online (casino, poker room, sportsbook) a consolidated subsidiary, in which Will Hill will continue to operate the site and Playtech will get a minority share (29% stake) of the profits. A strategic deal to say the least, hardly any up-front cash will be needed, with approximately 24 million needed to cover integration costs for the branding.

Leading the new branding will be the former CEO of Leisure and Gaming, Henry Birch. Furthermore, there is a yet-to-be-named purchased Playtech asset that will bring vast knowledge about Playtech powered online gaming sites and experience in European marketing, customer retention and software operations. In other words, Will Hill is aiming to become the leading online casino, poker and sports betting sites in all of Europe. Will Hill's boss man, Ralph Topping, said Will Hill will certainly become the online leader amongst UK brick 'n mortar gambling operations.

Further details of the five-year partnership include an option for Playtech to lift its stake entitlement to 32% if further conditions are obtained. Will Hill also has an option of buying Playtech's stake on an independent fair value basis after four years. In order to obtain the 29% stake, Playtech will be acquiring its online marketing assets and third party contracts worth up to 144.5 million and selling the majority of these to Will Hill.



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