||Global Leisure Partners LLP
20 Balderton Street, London, W1K 6TL, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7016 8050, Fax: +44 (0) 20 7016 8060
October 18th, 2005
HgCapital wins the race for Sporting Index
London, 18 October 2005. HgCapital, the European sector-focused private
equity investor, today announced that it has agreed to acquire Sporting
Index Group Limited (“Sporting Index”) from Duke Street
Capital for a total cash consideration of £75.8 million. Management
will continue to manage the business going forward and will retain
a meaningful stake in the company.
Founded in 1992, Sporting Index is the recognised leader in sports
spread betting, with a market share of approximately 70% in the UK.
It offers more markets (approximately 23,000), more fun bets and more
choice than any other sports spread betting company. It is also the
only sports spread betting company to offer continuous 24 hour betting
and sports spread betting on Sky TV. Furthermore, it has recently
expanded its product portfolio by developing a unique range of spread
Sporting Index’s management team, led by Chief Executive Richard
Glynn, has been successful in restructuring the business over the
past 3 years and in growing customer recruitment and bet volumes by
approximately 50% and 37% respectively over that period.
While recent historical focus of the company has been on the continued
evolution of the core UK sports spread betting business, HgCapital
will now work closely with management to leverage the strength of
Sporting Index’s core business, both organically and by acquisition,
to build a broader-based betting and gaming group. This will involve
not only the roll-out of the proven Sporting Index sports spread betting
model into new jurisdictions but also a further expansion of the product
range, both domestically and internationally.
This acquisition underlines HgCapital’s commitment to, and expertise
in, the gaming and broader leisure sector. HgCapital, until recently
an investor in Irish bookmaker Paddy Power, has developed strong relationships
in the gaming and gambling sector and is ideally placed to support
Sporting Index’s growth in this exciting market.
Ben Hewetson, Director and Head of Leisure Investments at HgCapital
“Over the past 3 years, Sporting Index’s management team
has built a market leading business which they have developed significantly,
most notably in terms of distribution and product development. Over
70% of all bets are now placed via the internet and the company continues
to develop its distribution channels to meet changing customer needs,
as evidenced by the recent developments of its Sky TV and mobile telephone
channels. The recently launched range of spread betting games is already
showing good signs of growth.
Richard Glynn, Chief Executive of Sporting Index said:
We believe that Sporting Index represents a robust base from which
to build, both organically and by acquisition, a larger betting and
gaming group, taking advantage of the exciting growth opportunities
in its target markets. We look forward to working with management
through the next phase of the company’s development.”
“We are delighted to be working with HgCapital. It has a long
and successful track record of working alongside leisure-related businesses.
Their Leisure Team has demonstrated an excellent understanding of
the potential of the business and shares our vision for the on-going
growth of the group. We are confident that they are the right partner
both for the business and for management and will provide the support
that we need to fulfil our ambitions for Sporting Index.”
HgCapital was advised by Global Leisure Partners LLP. Duke Street Capital,
the previous owner of Sporting Index, was advised by Rothschild.
|Chairman & CEO
|Global Leisure Partners LLP
|Tel: +44 (0) 20 7016 8050
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