Bally's Seeks to Acquire WPT Owner Allied Esports4 months ago
Bally’s Corporation has tossed its corporate hat into the ring in an attempt to pick up the World Poker Tour (WPT) and its corporate parent, Allied Esports Entertainment, Inc. Allied has announced that it has received an unsolicited proposal from Bally’s to purchase the entirety of Allied’s assets, including the WPT, for $100 million. The $100 million would be payable to Allied in either cash, Bally’s stock, or a combination of both.
There’s a catch to the deal, however. As a statement from Allied explains, the company would have to unwind a previously announced deal to sell the WPT and its intermediate corporate parent, Club Services, Inc. (CSI). Allied had previously announced the sale of CSI (including the WPT) in January to an unknown entity, Element Partners, LLC, in a deal worth $78.4 million.
Allied had previously expected to wind up the original deal with Element Partners by the end of March, pending shareholder approval. Bally’s new bid, which may also include certain Allied assets not included in the Element deal, such as the HyperX Esports Arena at the Luxor in Las Vegas.
While Allied’s share price jumped sharply on news of the bid, some outlets reported lukewarm reaction to Bally’s overture, which is still significantly under Allied’s market value. Bally’s Entertainment is a largely East Coast conglomerate. The company is based in Rhode Islands and owns several entities there, though it is not connected with Bally’s Casino in Las Vegas, which is a Caesars property.
Allied’s statement declares a continued preference for the existing Element deal. Allied’s Board of Directors “continues to recommend to the Company’s stockholders the approval of the transaction with Element,” and that the Bally’s bid will be evaluated “in due course.”
The company also noted:
“[Allied] and Element continue to discuss potential updates to the current terms of their agreement.” Further, Allied declared, “There can be no assurance that the Company will enter into a definitive agreement with Bally’s or consummate any transaction with Bally’s.”
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