888.com denies Cashcade acquisition negotiations


Reports this week from the Reuters news service that online gambling group 888.com was in advanced talks to acquire up to five companies prompted the publication e-Gaming Review to ask CEO Gigi Levy whether Cashcade was on his group's shopping list. Levy categorically dismissed the speculation.

The publication's curiosity was understandable; Cashcade, which owns Foxy Bingo, is currently going through a bidding process. Newspaper group Independent News and Media holds a 20 percent shareholding in Cashcade and needs to raise funds as it has to repay Euro 200 million this year, EGR reports. INM is understood to have a clause in its stakeholding which can force it to push a sale through. Cashcade is available for between GBP 70 million and GBP 100 million, according to sources.

Cashcade operates on the Globalcom platform, which 888 already owns, having purchased it two years back for $ 32.4 million. EGR notes that by buying Cashcade now, 888.com could keep it out of the hands of competitors such as Gamesys, owner of Jackpot Joy, one of the UK's biggest bingo sites.

Levy did admit that 888.com was "interested" in Cashcade, although it was not the company with which 888.com was in advanced talks.

'Right now there are lots of opportunities out there because there are companies that are struggling or that can see it will be hard to maintain growth because they are too small,' he added.

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