Posted on March 14, 2018 by staff

Sportech announces failure to find buyer


Sports gaming and technology firm Sportech has issued a profit warning and announced that it failed to find a buyer.

The listed group, which provides technology to racing and betting companies around the world, has also appointed a new CEO following the resignation of Ian Penrose last year.

Sportech put itself up for sale in October 2017 after a strategic review of the business.

However, it has now ended all talks with interested parties after concluded that these discussions were “unlikely to result in an offer” that it could recommend to shareholders.

“Whilst a sale of the company might have delivered an immediate further return to shareholders, in addition to the £75m returned last year, I am confident that the company has the potential to deliver significant long-term value to shareholders, especially if the US sports betting market is liberalised and also from further diversification strategies,” said non-executive chairman Richard McGuire.

“We are focused on ensuring Sportech benefits fully from any changes in the US sports betting market and we anticipate announcing exciting new initiatives in due course.”

In a trading update, the company said its comprehensive review had also identified a “number of write-offs and restatements” worth approximately £8m.

As a result, adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) are now expected to be below expectations at around £6.5m.

Sportech also announced the appointment of Andrew Gaughan as chief executive officer. Gaughan joined the company in 2010 and was appointed to the board in January 2017.

The business is also conducting a formal search process for a group chief financial officer, to be based in North America.