Wednesday 20 June 2018

Smurfit Jr's gambling software company raises £7.5m for US expansion

Dermot Smurfit Jr
Dermot Smurfit Jr
Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

GAN, the gaming software company headed up by Dermot Smurfit Jr, has raised £7.5m (€8.6m) as it continues its expansion in the US.

The funds have been raised on the back of a US Supreme Court ruling which last week struck down a federal law that has severely restricting sports betting there since 1992. The ruling is expected to lead to a liberalisation of US betting laws.

In a statement today the company said that it would use the funds, which were raised through a share issue, to "substantially" increase its engineering resources to better serve existing US clients' services, launch new US clients and new services in the US.

Proceeds will also be used to repay in full a £2m loan note issued in April 2017 "in order to strengthen the company's balance sheet."

The company is now debt-free and capitalised to levels the directors of GAN believe "are reasonably required to serve major multi-property and multi-State casino groups in the US."

"This strategic capital raising exercise positions GAN to consolidate its US market position and capture substantial incremental revenue opportunities available resulting from both Internet gaming and sports betting regulation in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and other US States expected to regulate Internet gambling in the near future," Dermot Smurfit, chief executive of GAN, said.

The over-subscribed share issue of 15,000,000 new ordinary shares of £0.01 each per share had an issue price of 50p per ordinary share.

The subscription shares will represent around 17.6pc of the enlarged issued share capital of GAN.

Upon completion of the Subscription, GAN's enlarged issued share capital will consist of 85,051,924 ordinary shares.

Last Tuesday Paddy Power Betfair saw its market valuation surge more than €400m after the betting giant confirmed talks to merge its US business with America's FanDuel to capitalise on the expected liberalisation of US betting laws.

Dublin-based Paddy Power Betfair said a deal with FanDuel would "create a combined business to target the prospective US sports betting market".

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