Global lottery specialist Scientific Games has made an unprecedented move for the online casino game developer NYX Gaming Group for a cool US$631m. The acquisition sees Scientific Games buy up all the outstanding shares for the Canadian company at $2.40 CAD, equivalent to $775 million CAD.
The deal is expected to be finalised and pushed through in the first quarter of 2018. The rationale behind the merger is to create a global gaming behemoth that can compete with some of the top brands in online casino development, including the two biggest names in NetEnt and Microgaming.
Along with other acquisitions that the company's made in the last decade, the NYX deal places Scientific Games in a strong market position, offering an extended portfolio of gaming software, digital technologies and lottery products. Speaking about how this will position Scientific Games for the future, the company’s CEO Kevin Sheehan said:
"This important transaction creates a global gaming and lottery powerhouse. Scientific Games will be a stronger industry leader offering one of the broadest end-to-end portfolios of engaging content, innovative technologies and digital products and services across gaming and lottery."
Matt Davey, CEO of NYX, also commented on the surprising news, saying:
"Scientific Games’ acquisition of NYX will provide immediate and compelling cash value for our shareholders, expand the products and solutions we are collectively able to offer our customers and accelerate the execution of our long-term strategic plan."
When Scientific Games has taken over a company in the past, the parent has often left the new acquisition operate as a wholly owned subsidiary. This is not expected to be the case with NYX. CEO Matt Davey is likely to transition into a newly created role within the parent company.
The new role will be as head of the new Digital Gaming and Sports Division at Scientific Games. Meanwhile, Kevin Sheehan, who has overseen the massive expansion of Scientific Games, will remain in his post as CEO and President. Speaking on the future for NYX and his new role, Davey said:
"We will now have scale, content and product development capabilities, complementary global infrastructure and access to an expanded customer base. We believe Scientific Games is the ideal partner for NYX and we look forward to working alongside the talented Scientific Games team."
NYX Gaming marks the latest in a long line of acquisitions for Scientific Gaming, a company that was ironically formed during a takeover in 2000, when Autotote Corp bought it for £308 million, retaining the brand name. With the behemoth formed, Scientific Games went on a hunt for other companies that it could merge with.
The American company invaded the UK market, with the first company to fall being The Global Draw. It provided server-based gambling machines to bookies up and down the country. The following year Scientfic Games went on to also acquire Games Media, a digital entertainment company based in the UK.
Its first foray into UK gaming software was with machine manufacturer Barcrest in 2010, with Scientific Games transforming select titles from Barcrest’s back catalogue into classic online slots. There was also a spate of mergers and buyouts of smaller firms such as GameLogic, Provoloto and Parspro.
More recently, it bought over WMS Industries, one of the biggest manufacturers of slot machines for $1.5 billion, before doubling down on Bally Technologies for $3.3 billion. In 2017, it has continued this trend, acquiring and integrating DEQ Systems in January and then moving on to Red7Mobile in July of this year.
Scientific Games' acquisition of NYX means that it now owns one of the most well-known game development studios, NextGen Gaming, as well as Side City and Icecap Studios. Between the three they have created an amazing range of games, including Lightning Gems and Shangri La.
These and other NYX titles can be found in some of the best online casinos, including CasinoPop, Casino Room and Ikibu Casino. Scientific Games has also been hard at work creating new games, as well as using its collective power to win a bid for rights to the James Bond franchise.
The deal, which was first announced in March 2017, covers land-based gaming, lottery games, and social slots. The agreement with EON Productions and MGM Interactive means that Scientific Games can create a series of games based on Bond films past and present. Scientific Games CEO Kevin Sheehan said:
"The Bond franchise is clearly a long sought-after and incredibly exciting brand for our industry. James Bond is synonymous with action, excitement and next-generation technology. We look forward to harnessing the power of the Bond brand to drive innovation across the company in the years ahead."
To see the affects/benefits of the massive NYX Gaming Group take over by Scientific Games, plan to visit a top NYX-partnered site, like CasinPop. Players who signup for the a new account at CasinoPop will be greeted with a generous welcome bonus, which makes for a nice bonus while checking out what's new with NYX products!