Allwyn Entertainment hails ‘next chapter’ with a $9.3bn NYSE listing

Allwyn Entertainment has announced its intentions to become publicly listed on the New York Stock Exchange in a transaction worth around $9.3bn
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Allwyn Entertainment has announced its intentions to become publicly listed on the New York Stock Exchange in a transaction worth around $9.3bn. 

Partnering with Cohn Robbins Holding Corp, the financial services firm currently NYSE listed, Allwyn stated that the total transaction value is $9.3bn, around 11.5 times higher than its most recent adjusted EBITDA figure. 

Setting its sights on evolving into a global lottery brand, the Czech operator expects the listing to expand its reach into the ‘highly attractive’ US lottery market and drive its organic and inorganic growth metrics. 

Karel Komárek, Chairman of the Board and Founder of KKCG Investment Group, Allwyn’s majority owner, commented: “Listing on the NYSE is the next chapter in Allwyn’s history and track record of shared success benefitting players, communities, governments and investors.  

“We forecast the business delivering attractive revenue, profit and cash flow growth, creating attractive long-term value for investors. Going public positions Allwyn to expand its shared success to more markets, while enhancing capital access to fund opportunities for accelerated growth.

“KKCG has known for years that Allwyn is an amazing business, and I am very proud that global investors will have the opportunity to participate in its further growth.”

CRHC, Co-Chaired by its Co-Founders, Gary D. Cohn and Clifton S. Robbins, has raised $828m to fund the transaction, as well as committing $350m as a ‘PIPE investment’ of securities in the combined company. Additionally, the PIPE investment contains $50m worth of funding from international investors from CRHC sponsors. 

Following the completion of the transaction, Robbins will join Allwyn’s Board of Directors and Cohn will serve as a Special Advisor to the Board Chairman.

In a joint statement, Cohn and Robbins added: “We have worked with hundreds of management teams and invested in hundreds of companies in our careers, but we founded Cohn Robbins to seek out just one.  

“We believe that Allwyn is the right company, in the right industry, at the right time and with the right leadership team.  We are excited by the growth opportunities the Company has ahead of it and we look forward to providing our support.  We also are very pleased to be bringing this transaction to Cohn Robbins’ shareholders in an innovative way and at an attractive valuation.” 

Outlining the operator’s investor policy, Allwyn stated that the current shareholders must not hold less than 83% of the company. Furthermore, no single additional shareholder must hold more than 5% of the total company. 

Allwyn’s Board of Directors strongly supports the listing, highlighting the opportunity it holds to expand into new global markets. 

“Allwyn operates lotteries in Austria, the Czech Republic, Greece, Cyprus and Italy, and forecasts approximately $810m in Adjusted EBITDA from approximately $1.7bn in net gaming revenue in 2022,” the operator noted in a statement. 

“Trends in developed countries’ lottery, igaming and sports betting markets indicate the potential for significant additional online penetration in markets where Allwyn operates, as well as in those it has targeted for expansion,” it added, citing the growth of the total global lottery and gaming market. 

CEO Robert Chvatal stated: “It is an opportune time for Allwyn to take this exciting step. Jurisdictions in Europe and North America should have higher expectations for the innovations their lotteries can deliver. 

“We look forward to applying our experience in developing market-specific, culturally-attuned lottery entertainment to new customers and geographies as an NYSE-listed company.”

This announcement comes at a significant period in Allwyn’s history; recently, the firm re-branded from SAZKA Entertainment in a bid to evolve into a global company, expanding on its dominant European position. 

Furthermore, the operator is currently bidding for the UK National Lottery license in the Fourth National Lottery license competition, set to be decided in the next few months. 

Allwyn’s UK chairman – spearheading the bid to replace Camelot – Sir Keith Mills, concluded: “The announcement is an important milestone for our parent company. It is a significant endorsement of Allwyn’s ability to increase lottery sales around the world by making them more entertaining, innovative, and appealing to their customers. 

“It’s exciting to see our parent company’s appetite for growth and the desire to bring lottery expertise to new corners of the world. And whilst we have already submitted our bid for the Fourth National Lottery Licence, this partnership only makes our proposition stronger”.