US casino operator MGM ends its £8bn bid for Ladbrokes owner Entain

Business

Shares in Ladbrokes and Coral owner Entain slid after its US suitor backed away from a bid.

The betting giant had been fighting off an £8billion offer from casino operator MGM Resorts, saying it ‘significantly undervalued’ Entain.

But investors who were hoping that MGM would come back with a higher offer were disappointed, as the Las Vegas company bailed out.

Ladbrokes and Coral owner Entain had been fighting off an £8bn offer from casino operator MGM Resorts, saying it ‘significantly undervalued’ the company

MGM said: ‘After careful consideration and having reflected on the limited recent engagement between the respective companies regarding MGM’s rejected all-stock proposal, it does not intend to submit a revised proposal and it will not make a firm offer for Entain.’

Shares in Entain, formerly known as GVC, fell 11.9 per cent, or 168.5p, to 1245p. But they are still up 9 per cent from their level before MGM’s approach, suggesting some investors fancy another suitor may come along.

British bookies have been in hot demand, after sports betting was legalised in the US two years ago.

UK firms were keen to enter the market, but by law were forced to partner with casino firms in the US.

Even so, it has proved hugely successful, and the US firms are getting tired of sharing their spoils.

Instead, they are trying to buy the British businesses, acquiring all their technology and know-how.

William Hill has been snapped up by Caesars casino, while Paddy Power owner Flutter stayed ahead of the curve by merging with Canada’s Stars Group to create a £10billion London-listed giant.