William Hill
William Hill

Rank Group PLC and 888 Holdings PLC have jointly submitted an offer to bookmaker William Hill PLC in a bid to buy the company for 3.6 billion pounds.

The offer is expected to be around 364 pence per share, and the resulting synergies in the merger would hike the value up to 408 pence per share.

Neither Rank Group nor 888 issued a comment on the proposal when contacted. A William Hill spokesperson declined to comment on the matter.

According to Rank Group and 888, there was a “significant industrial logic” to the merger of the three companies as a basis for the proposed tie-up.

William Hill said that it would listen to proposals from the consortium, but the company was still unclear on whether or not the deal would help its strategic positioning or create a superior strategy value for William Hill.

The approach of the two companies are still “highly preliminary” regarding the merger of the three companies and no formal proposal has been given as of yet according to sources familiar with the proceedings.

The merger of the three companies would be another consolidation within the U.K. betting industry following the pending merger of competing companies Ladbrokes Plc and Coral. The success of the merger would make it the biggest bookmaker overtaking William Hill. The mergers have been a result of increasing tax burdens imposed by the government as the competition for new customers grows ever stricter, and the crackdown on the lucrative business of fixed-odds betting terminals.

Shares of William Hill went up 6.6 pence to 334 pence. Rank fell by 1.1 percent to 211.9 pence and 888 also fell by 2.75 pence to 220.75 pence.