Saturday 15 December 2018

Smurfit's Gan eyes Nasdaq listing as it seeks US growth

Dermot Smurfit Jr, the CEO of gaming software company Gan
Dermot Smurfit Jr, the CEO of gaming software company Gan
Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

Gan, the gaming software company headed by Dermot Smurfit Jr, has said that its medium-term strategy is to seek a listing on New York's Nasdaq Exchange.

Speaking to the Irish Independent, Mr Smurfit said that investors in the US represent "a natural audience" for the company, where it is easier to explain Gan's equity story than in the UK.

Gan yesterday announced that it had 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 that last week struck down a federal law severely restricting sports betting.

The ruling is expected to lead to a liberalisation of US betting laws.

Gan said that it would use the funds - which were raised through a share issue - to "substantially" increase its engineering resources to better serve US clients' services, seek new US clients and launch new services there in anticipation of the more widespread internet sports betting.

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," said Mr Smurfit.

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 week, the company issued a statement welcoming the Supreme Court ruling. It said it was preparing to launch internet sports betting in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania for its clients in the second half of the year.

Irish Independent

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