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Elys agrees to acquire US Bookmaking


Online gambling operator and supplier Elys Game Technology has entered into a definitive purchase agreement to acquire 100% of Bookmakers Company, the Nevada-based sports betting services provider trading as US Bookmaking (USB).

Under the agreement, Elys will pay an initial $12m upon closing of the deal, with this to be split as 50% cash and 50% in its common stock.

Additional earnout payments of up to $41.8m will also be paid as 50% cash and 50% in Elys common stock, subject to USB achieving certain adjusted cumulative earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) milestones, ranging from $213,850 in 2021 and $19.4m for 2025.

The deal could close as early as July 15.

Founded in 2016, USB provides sports wagering services such as design and consulting, turn-key sports wagering solutions, and risk management.

The business is led by president Victor Salerno, who has more than 40 years of experience working within the Nevada sports betting market, and chief executive Bob Kocienski, who has also worked in the industry for over 40 years.

Robert Walker, who previously managed sportsbooks at major Nevada casinos including the Stardust, Mirage and MGM, currently serves as director of bookmaking, while John Salerno, who has spent over 20 years working in the sports betting sector, is director of operations and compliance.

USB works with clients across the US including Santa Ana Star Casino, Isleta Resort & Casino and Santa Claran Hotel & Casino in, New Mexico, as well as the Sky Ute property in Colorado.

The supplier also has partnerships in place with the Odawa Tribe in Michigan and the 4 Bears Tribe in North Dakota, as well as a service agreement in Washington DC, with plans to launch later this year, and recently agreed a B2C leasing deal for an interactive skin in Iowa.

“We found great commonality between the family culture that Elys fosters in its Italian operations, as with USB and its business operations spanning a number of states in the US,” Elys executive chairman Michele Ciavarella said.

“We believe that our Elys Gameboard technology will give USB the tools they need to rapidly expand their current US footprint and potentially develop operations in the evolving Canadian sports betting market.

“The agreement with USB provides our shareholders with a compelling growth opportunity through the combination of our leading-edge betting technology and USB’s seasoned bookmaking expertise.”

Salerno, who also co-founded USB, added: “We believe the timing of this acquisition is ideal for USB since we have been vetting the technology field for the best sports betting technology while getting ready for the reopening of our clients as the Covid-19 pandemic subsides.

“The addition of a proprietary sports betting platform will allow USB to customize features that our clients desire while having full control of our cost structure. We look forward to working with the ELYS team to complete the transaction as quickly as possible.”