The $4.9 billion acquisition of Pokerstars and Full Tilt Poker parent The Rational Group by Montreal-based Amaya Gaming has set the online gambling industry buzzing, and details now emerging include:
* The consideration of $4.9 billion is to be delivered as follows:
$2.1 billion in senior secured credit facilities; $800 million in senior secured second lien term loans; $1 billion to be raised through the issuance of convertible preferred shares; $460 million to be raised through the issuance of subscription receipts; and about $540 million in cash.
A joint statement from the two companies advises that the shareholders of the Oldford Group, the parent company of the Rational Group, “…will dispose of their shares to a wholly-owned subsidiary of Amaya.”
Mark Scheinberg, Rational's founder and CEO, and “other principles of Oldford Group” will resign once the transaction has been completed.
* The highly effective and trusted Rational Group operational executive team and its employees are to be retained, although founders Mark and Isai Scheinberg have agreed to step down and withdraw from involvement in the group.
* Amaya chief executive David Baazov has characterised the acquisition as a transformative event for his group, which has already acquired important online gambling companies like Cryptologic, Ongame and Chartwell Tech.
He said in a statement Friday that the agreement strengthens Amaya's core B2B operations with “…a consumer online powerhouse that creates a scalable global platform for growth.”
Baazov added: “Mark Scheinberg pioneered the online poker industry, building a remarkable business and earning the trust of millions of poker players by delivering the industry's best game experiences, customer service and online security.
“Working with the experienced executive team at Rational Group, Amaya will continue that tradition of excellence and accelerate growth into new markets and verticals.
“Amaya believes the transaction will expedite the entry of PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker into regulated markets in which Amaya already holds a footprint, particularly the USA.”
“Rational Group's executive management team will be retained and online poker services provided by PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker will be unaffected by the transaction, with players continuing to enjoy uninterrupted access to their gaming experience.”