David Baazov, former CEO and Chairman of Amaya Gaming has made an official bid to buy the Canadian gaming and gambling company to a total price of C$3.48 billion, or C$24 per share. His bid is a 30.9 percent premium on Amaya’s Friday market price, when their shares closed at C$18.34, and the offer was made in his capacity as the head of a yet-to-be-announced business company. Baazov’s current stake in the company is 17.2 percent.
Baazov had expressed his interest in buying the company as early as February 2016, at a time when he was still Chairman and CEO of the company. However, following the insider trading charges made by the AMF against him in March, he decided to focus on other things, while the bid was unofficially put on hold. But if it is accepted, it would make Baazov the official owner of both Amaya Gaming and some of the largest poker brands in the online industry, Full Tilt Poker and Poker Stars, both of which were acquired through their parent company, Rational Group, two years ago.
Amaya Gaming were also in merger negotiations with UK bookmaker and gambling operator William Hill that would have lead to the creation of a large gambling conglomerate, but William Hill decided to abandon the deal after objections from their majority stakeholders.
Commenting on the offer, Baazov stated that a total of C$3.65 billion were secured for the prospective buyout of the gambling company, with four different funds showing interest to financially support the purchase. The non-binding offer was confirmed by the board of directors of Amaya Gaming, who will take their time to review the offer and disclose their decision in a timely manner. Regarding their decision, they stated there is no guarantee the offer may be finalized with a transaction.