BoyleSports considers bid for William Hill’s retail betting shops in the UK

The Irish operator BoyleSports has confirmed its interest in bidding for some or all of William Hill’s retail betting shops in the UK.

In May, Caesars Entertainment announced it would begin the bidding process for the UK and European assets of William Hill. This came after the US casino giant completed its acquisition of William Hill in April.

When the £2.9bn deal was announced in September last year, Caesars stated that its main target of the transaction was William Hill’s US sports betting business and technology. 

From the very beginning of negotiations, Caesars stated it planned to sell off the rest of William Hill’s assets once the deal was completed.

BoyleSports confirms interest in William Hill assets

In a statement, the Irish operator said that Caesars’ plans to sell William Hill’s non-US assets has created a “rare opportunity” to extend its footprint in the UK betting space.

BoyleSports currently operates 21 shops across Great Britain along with 45 in Northern Ireland, while William Hill is the country’s largest retail sportsbook operator.

A BoyleSports spokesperson said: “BoyleSports would certainly be interested in acquiring some or all of William Hill’s UK shops, or indeed any other opportunity that makes sense for our business.

“We have made no secret of our ambition to be one of the principal operators on the UK high street and believe that our retail and digital offerings represents a best in class, safe, and enjoyable proposition for the betting public.

“We already have 21 shops in the UK which, along with our 45 shops in Northern Ireland and our recently upgraded online betting site, gives us a sizeable foothold in the UK retail and online markets. The sale of the William Hill estate presents us with a rare opportunity to achieve the retail scale we have been targeting.”

Who else is interested in William Hill’s assets?

In May, it was reported that several businesses in the gambling space are lining up to bid for William Hill’s UK and European assets.

Among the potential bidders is the US private equity fund Apollo Global Management, which previously competed against Caesars for the acquisition of William Hill last year.

If Apollo is successful in its bid, it “would be expected” that it would combine the William Hill assets with its Italian subsidiary Gamenet.

It was also reported that the Israeli Shaked business family, which was the founding shareholders behind the online sports betting and casino operator 888 Holdings, are interested in the bookmaker’s assets.

Other potential bidders include the owner of Betfred, Fred Done, and the Swedish operator Kindred Group.