Business Irish

Sunday 23 October 2016

BoyleSports 'disappointed' that Ladbrokes and Gala Coral have decided to sell their 359 shops

Colm Kelpe

Published 17/10/2016 | 08:40

Ladbrokes Photo: PA
Ladbrokes Photo: PA

BoyleSports has said it is “disappointed” that Ladbrokes and Gala Coral have decided to sell their 359 shops to existing UK retailers after it was pipped at the post in the race to buy the outlets.

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The Irish betting chain said its bid was higher than the reported sale price.

The deal will see Betfred reportedly shell out £55 million for 322 high street outlets, and Stan James pay £500,000 for 37.

BoyleSports said its bid was fully funded, that it was cognisant of the changing political and regulatory UK landscape, and could have been completed within two weeks of acceptance.

“BoyleSports believes the decision not to allow a challenger brand onto the UK high street is bad for retail consumers who would have benefited from the keen pricing and excellent service already available to our existing Irish retail customers and to online customers in Ireland and the UK,” the company said in a statement.

““BoyleSports will be communicating its concerns to the Competition and Markets Authority and is reviewing its options on what other steps may be open to us.”

The betting outlets in the UK were being off-loaded as a result of the £2.2bn merger between Ladbrokes and Gala Coral.

Ladbrokes boss Jim Mullen said: "The sale of these shops will clear the last significant hurdle to delivering on the merger with Coral and paves the way for our focus on completion and quickly delivering on the opportunities the merger offers."

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