Sky Bet’s origins stem from BSkyB’s acquisition of Sports Internet Group in July 2000 which included a small sports betting company called Surrey Sorts which was rebranded in 2002 to Sky Bet.
The company continued to grow and in 2006 totalbet and ukbetting were merged into Sky Bet through BskyB’s acquisition of 365 Media Group. Incredibly, Sky Bet remains one of the few gaming companies not to have a high street presence. This fact did not put off potential buyers and in 2015 private equity investment firm CVC Capital Partners completed the purchase of a majority stake in the business and the dice have continued to roll towards an IPO ever since.
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With all of the continued success, rumours of a float have apparently been on the cards for the business virtually since the ink dried on CVC’s purchase. These rumours have, on more than one occasion, have led to the executives running the company to deny them. However, the rumour mill went into overdrive when CVC were reported to be considering lining up a float towards the beginning of 2017.
That time has come and gone and no float has materialised however, given the uncertain political climate the company faced, these time scales were always speculative. Given the recent election results and the impending Brexit negotiations, the timescales are even more likely to be extended out further. However, a Sky Bet IPO is still the likeliest of exits given the parties involved. CVC Capital Partners owns the vast majority of shares, though broadcaster Sky still hold a 20% stake in the business post sale. An IPO therefore seems inevitable, as neither will really be interested in selling the company on again and potentially complicate the cap table further.
The only remaining question is when. Sign-up below and we’ll let you know as soon as we find out more information regarding a potential IPO.