CMA gives final approval to Ladbrokes-Gala Coral merger

ladbrokesimageThe UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has granted final clearance to the pending merger between Ladbrokes and Gala Coral.

The competition regulatory body approved the deal after giving the go-ahead to the sale of 360 shops by the two bookmakers to rival operators Betfred and Stan James.

In July, the CMA had requested that Ladbrokes and Coral sell off between 350 and 400 betting shops in order to satisfy issues regarding competition concerns in locations across the UK, should the merger go through.

The approval paves the way for the companies to finalise the merger and create a combined operation worth approximately £2.3 billion (€2.6 billion/$2.8 billion).

In response, Ladbrokes said in a statement that it will now publish a prospectus “in relation to the readmission of the combined group to the premium listing segment of the Financial Conduct Authority’s Official List and to trading on the London Stock Exchange”.

Ladbrokes also said that it expects the merger to be finalised “in the very near future”.

Jim Mullen, chief executive of Ladbrokes, added: “I am delighted that the CMA has given approval to our merger with Coral; both businesses are approaching the merger with good momentum and we are now focusing on completing the merger and delivering on the opportunities it offers.”

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