Cherry is acquiring Malta-based COYS Ltd, which via its subsidiaries markets online casino games under the brands www.NorgesAutomaten.com, www.SverigeAutomaten.com and www.DanmarksAutomaten.com.
Friday 29th January 2010
Cherry is acquiring Malta-based COYS Ltd, which via its subsidiaries markets online casino games under the brands www.NorgesAutomaten.com, www.SverigeAutomaten.com and www.DanmarksAutomaten.com. The acquisition gives Cherry a strong position in the online gaming sector in Scandinavia and strategically complements Cherry's existing operations in the areas online gaming, restaurant casino and maritime gaming.
Cherry has on this date entered into an agreement for the acquisition of Malta-based COYS Ltd. COYS Ltd markets casino games in partnership with Betsson Services Ltd in a white label solution in which Betsson is responsible for aspects such as technology, customer management and payment processing. Marketing is done primarily under the brands www.NorgesAutomaten.com, www.SverigeAutomaten.com and www.DanmarksAutomaten.com, but also extends to more than 500 domain names for further growth in Europe. As per 31 December 2009, COYS Ltd had approximately 55,000 registered customers.
The acquisition is part of Cherry's strategy to strengthen its position as a leading player in the gaming industry on land, at sea and online. Cherry's existing online gaming enterprise, www.PlayCherry.com, will be organisationally integrated with the acquired operations.
The acquisition is expected to increase turnover (gaming profits after bonus costs) for Cherryföretagen by approximately SEK 150 million in 2010 and increase net profit by more than SEK 30 million. Expectations for 2010 are based on 2009 results. The acquisition is expected to have an immediate, positive impact on profit per share.
The consideration consists of four parts: a) SEK 50 million in cash upon possession, b) payment with shares of Cherryföretagen AB (Publ) through a directed share issue to the sellers for 6.8 million shares, c) SEK 10 million in delayed considerations and d) a result-based additional payment over 3 years. None of the sellers will obtain more than 16 percent of the votes in Cherry and the sellers together may hold maximum 34 percent of the votes in Cherry. Cherry intends to carry out a rights issue in order to both finance the acquisition and strengthen the company for the upcoming expansion. The issue in its entirety is underwritten by Cherry's principal owner. The board of directors of Cherry therefore intends to convene an extraordinary general meeting in the near future. The acquisition and takeover of operations will occur upon completion of the rights issue.
The principal owners of COYS Ltd, Morten Klein and Lorang Andreassen, will remain active in the acquired operations. Lorang Andreassen and Morten Klein have vast experience and expertise in online gaming and were previously employed by the Cherry Group.
âThis is a strategically important acquisition which gives Cherry access to established brands in online gaming and enables it to reach critical mass. We see great opportunities for continued expansion in both existing and new geographic markets. From a long-term perspective, we feel that physical games and online games will be linked together, creating new opportunities. Each year, Cherry provides services to about 50 million players on land and at sea.â says Gunnar Lind, CEO of Cherryföretagen.
âwww.NorgesAutomaten.com, www.SverigeAutomaten.com and www.DanmarksAutomaten.com have enjoyed a very positive reception on the market. Cherry has vast experience with traditional casino operations and has proven itself able to develop new deals. We feel that the business will have extremely good conditions for further development in the framework of Cherryföretagen.â says Lorang Andreassen, part-owner of COYS Ltd.
For further information please contact, Gunnar Lind, CEO Cherryföretagen AB, telephone,
+46 709-279 611, Gunnar.Lind@Cherry.se
Cherry in brief
Cherry is a public Swedish Gaming Company listed on AktieTorget with approximately 2400 shareholders. Cherryföretagen AB specializes in casinos, slot machines and Internet gaming, which are all operated through the companyâs subsidiaries. Gaming is being operated in more than 250 restaurants in Sweden, 40 vessels servicing Baltic Sea, 13 vessels servicing the Mediterranean, 17 vessels servicing English Channel/Irish Sea and North Sea and via Internet www.PlayCherry.com, www.NorgesAutomaten.com, www.SverigeAutomaten.com and www.DanmarksAutomaten.com. Cherry employs about 700 people. www.Cherry.se