Last week, Tabcorp Holdings Limited revealed that the Supreme Court of Victoria has insisted that a meeting of Tatts investors must be scheduled for October 18th 2017 in order for the company’s shareholders to consider and vote on the two operators’ proposed merger.
The Chairman of Tabcorp, Paula Dwyer, confirmed that Tatts had already released a Scheme Booklet about the proposed merger, saying that the Booklet represented an important step towards a possible deal that would result in a first-class gambling entertainment behemonth. Ms. Dwyer further explained that a combined company would bring large financial and other benefits for the customers, investors and business partners of both operators.
One of the biggest shareholders of Tatts Group, AustralianSuper, has hinted that it would once again back the proposed merger by voting its shared in the company in favour of the deal.
Independent Expert’s Merger Report
The Tatts Board appointed the Independent Expert Grant Samuel to prepare an Independent Expert’s Report in terms of the merger, with the report being added to the Scheme Booklet. According to the Independent Expert, the merger is in the best interest of the company’s shareholders, especially considering the fact that there had not been a better proposal.
In addition, the Independent Expert highlighted the fact that the value of the collective interest that Tatts investors would have in the combined company would be larger than their contribution to the Group’s value. Moreover, the Independent Expert shared that the merger would bring meaningful premium and payment for both business improvements and synergies in case it is carried out.
Merger Regulatory Approval and Setbacks
Back in June, Casino Guardian reported that the long-expected merger between the Australian sports betting operators Tabcorp and Tatts Group had been given the green light by the Australian Competition Tribunal (ACT). The approval of the local regulatory watchdog would give the two companies the chance to combine their forces in a gambling industry giant that would hold a massive portion of the country’s sports betting market.
The decision of the Tribunal was handed down at the Federal Court by the ATC’s Justice John Midleton, with the Australian Competition Tribunal being pleased with the conditions of the proposed merger which, according to it, would result in a major benefit to the public.
The multi-billion deal between the two of the largest Australian gaming companies has faced certain difficulties, especially after the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has appealed the operators’ merger decision in Federal Court. The Commission required a further judicial review of the deal which had been estimated to AU$11 billion, and so did CrownBet Pty which also shared its concerns with a possible deal between Tabcorp and Tatts Group.
The Federal Court of Australia heard the application of both ACCC and CrownBet on August 28th and 29th 2017, with its final decision still being expected. In the light of recent events, Tabcorp remains certain that the permission of the merger is to be upheld.