Shares of Scientific Games (NASDAQ: SGMS) were down 4.6% heading into noontime trading Thursday after the casino and gaming-services leader offered to buy the rest of SciPlay (NASDAQ: SCPL) that it didn’t already own.
Not surprisingly, SciPlay’s stock was soaring on the news, rising 12% in morning trading.
Scientific Games already owns 81% of the economic interest in SciPlay and 98% of its voting power; it says the all-stock deal would give the two companies a pro forma market cap of $7 billion.
Scientific Games made the offer to SciPlay’s board members, who now must decide whether to accept the bid. SciPlay would become a wholly owned subsidiary of Scientific Games if they agreed.
The acquisition attempt is in line with Scientific Games’ effort to increase its focus on digital gaming markets. It recently announced it intended to divest its lottery and sports-betting businesses.
SciPlay is a developer and publisher of digital games for mobile and web platforms, offering casino games like Jackpot Party Casino and Quick Hit Slots, and internet games such as Monopoly Slots and Bingo Showdown.
Mobile gaming is becoming an especially robust component of leisure time activity, and the two companies can form a more formidable and unified front to the competition.
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