Cohn Robbins Holdings has congratulated its partners at Allwyn after the UK Gambling Commission named the Czech operator as its ‘preferred applicant’ for the fourth National Lottery licence.
Cohn Robbins entered into a merger agreement with Allwyn in January to help the operator publicly list on the New York Stock Exchange in a deal worth up to $9.3bn. The financial services firm raised $828m to fund the transaction, as well as committing $350m as a ‘PIPE investment’ of securities in the combined company.
Following this week’s landmark announcement, a key pillar of Allwyn’s strategy to become a global lottery operator, Cohn Robbins’ co-chairmen Gary D. Cohn and Clifton S. Robbins publicly commented their congratulations to the preferred applicant.
“We congratulate our partners, led by Board Chairman Karel Komárek and CEO Robert Chvatal, along with the UK team led by Sir Keith Mills, on this tremendous accomplishment and milestone in Allwyn’s journey to become the global leader in managing lotteries,” the pair stated.
“The UK National Lottery is one of the largest in the world and we are very pleased that Allwyn Entertainment Ltd.’s proposal was judged to be the best way of growing returns to good causes.”
Whilst Allwyn has maintained its global lottery ambitions in recent months, Cohn Robbins has revealed that a positive outcome for Allwyn in the fourth National Lottery licence competition was ‘not part’ of its ‘financial forecasts in evaluating and entering into the transaction’.
“We remain strongly supportive of Allwyn’s goal to continue to expand into new markets including the UK, Western Europe and the United States,” added Cohn and Robbins.
Currently, there is at least a 10-day legal standstill period, following which will be a 22-month handover period between Camelot and Allwyn, with the fourth licence taking effect in February 2024.