SAZKA to acquire Novomatic’s stake in Casinos Austria

Pan-European lottery and sports betting operator SAZKA Group has reached an agreement to acquire Novomatic’s stake in Casinos Austria AG (CASAG).

Confirming the agreement to sell its 17.19 per cent stake, Novomatic states on its website that a binding agreement has been reached with the Czech gambling firm which is “in the best interest” of Casinos Austria to have “key and long term shareholders aligned”.

The transaction will see Sazka increase its shareholding in Casinos Austria from 38 to over 55 per cent.
Casino Austria has been jointly controlled by Novomatic and Sazka since 2016, when the pair agreed “a strategic partnership of equals” to manage both CASAG and Österreichische Lotterien. However, each partner admitted that this structure has not produced the anticipated results.

“We believe it is the best solution for the company. We want to ensure stable positive development for CASAG in a long-term partnership of its two biggest shareholders. We are committed to work jointly with ÖBAG and CASAG team to achieve well-being for its customers, employees and communities we do business with. We are prepared to focus on CASAG business and bring innovations to the market,” said Robert Chvatal, CEO of SAZKA Group.

Terms of the agreement have not been undisclosed, the deal will be subject to applicable regulatory conditions and notifications, as well as approval from other shareholders in CASAG.

However, following the transaction, Novomatic will retain its 11 per cent stake in Österreichische Lotterien, the operating firm of the Austrian Lotteries and subsidiary of CASAG.

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