Amaya Asking Price Just Too High For Founder David BaazovDecember 21, 2016 11:41 am
It looks like former Amaya CEO David Baazov will have to be content to own just a 17.2% stake in the Canadian gaming company which owns PokerStars, after he announced in a press release that the asking price shareholders were demanding was too high. Following the news, Baazov explained:
“After consulting with my advisors, I determined that the best course of action for me and Amaya would be for me to end my attempt to purchase the Company.”
Last month, Baazov proposed a $6.7 billion offer for the firm, at the time explaining that he had secured the financing of a number of investors, including Dubai-based KBC Aldini Capital. Baazov’s attempt to reacquire the firm was helped out none by Lal subsequently denying any involvement with the potential deal, or by the fact Baazov is currently under investigation by Quebec’s securities regulator for possible insider trading activities.
During his attempt to purchase Amaya, Baazov initially offered a price of $21 per share, before later increasing that offer to $24 per share. Nevertheless, SpringOwl Asset Management LLC, a hedge fund and major investor in Amaya, dismissed the bid as undervalued. At present, however, Amaya shares are currently trading at c$19 (US$14.2), down by almost 2% on the day.
The highest the shares have reached over the past 52 weeks was around c$23 in October, but at its present price the company has a market capitalization worth just $2.8 billion. Interestingly, Amaya became the world’s biggest online gambling company in 2014 after purchasing PokerStars and Full Tilt in a deal worth $5 billion.
After announcing the withdrawal of his bid, Bazoov wished the company well, stating: “As the founder of Amaya this was not a decision I took lightly, as it was always my intent to arrive at an outcome that was in the best interests of all shareholders. I wish my friends and former colleagues at Amaya continued success in driving value for all shareholders.”