Thursday 26 April 2018

Ladbrokes signs £1.35bn facility to fund Coral deal

An employee fixes betting information to the wall in a branch of Coral bookmakers, operated by Gala Coral Group Ltd., in London, U.K., on Friday, July 24, 2015. Ladbrokes Plc agreed to buy Coral Group in a share-exchange deal to create the U.K.'s biggest betting-shop chain and fight back against a tide of online competition. Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Bookmaker Ladbrokes said it had signed a £1.35bn facility with banks to fund its proposed merger with Gala Coral.

The new facility has three tranches and will be available for drawing subject to completion of the merger, the company said.

Ladbrokes and Gala Coral sealed an all-share merger deal in July, creating a 2.3 billion pound betting group that will seek to build on its dominance of Britain's high streets to expand its online business.

As a result of the financing, Gala Coral's debt will not be transferred into the new company, named Ladbrokes Coral, at completion of the merger, Ladbrokes said on Friday.

The company had cut its full-year dividend to 3 pence from 8.9 pence per share in July to help fund the deal.

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