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Inspired Announces Agreement To Acquire Novomatic UK’s Gaming Technology Group

George Miller

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Inspired Announces Agreement To Acquire Novomatic UK's Gaming Technology Group
Reading Time: 4 minutes

 

Anticipated to Diversify and Broaden Scale and Scope of Inspired’s Footprint and Product Offering

 

Inspired Entertainment, Inc. announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the Gaming Technology Group (“NTG”) of Novomatic UK Ltd. (“Novomatic UK”), a division of NOVOMATIC GROUP, a leading international supplier of gaming equipment and solutions, for the EUR equivalent of US$120.0 million in cash.

Inspired is a leading supplier of Category B2/B3 gaming terminals in the UK, and NTG is a leading supplier of Category B3, C and D gaming terminals to pubs, arcades, motorway service areas and holiday resorts in the UK.  Following the transaction, Inspired would be positioned to supply an extensive range of products and services across the UK and Europe, and beyond.  Upon closing the acquisition, Inspired would manage more than 75,000 gaming machines in the UK and Europe.

“The potential acquisition of NTG is transformational for Inspired, enabling us to dramatically increase the size, scale and scope of our business by combining our highly complementary, but largely non-overlapping, businesses,” said Lorne Weil, Executive Chairman of Inspired Entertainment. “We expect to leverage our superior game content, technology, operational capabilities and respective footprints to augment the existing growth trends for our enterprise.”

NTG is comprised of the following six companies:

  • Gamestec Leisure – Primarily serving the UK pub sector through the placement of gaming machines on a managed service basis and delivering service support to the bingo and self service betting terminals sectors.
  • Playnation Limited Serving the UK holiday and leisure industry, including holiday parks, motorway service stations, bowling alleys, airports and independent holiday resorts through revenue share arrangements with operators.
  • Astra Games Limited – Gaming machine manufacturer, selling Category B, C and D gaming machines to pubs, adult gaming centers, and holiday resorts.
  • Bell-Fruit Group Limited – Primarily selling Category C machines, both analog and digital, and exporting machines to key European geographies.
  • Harlequin Gaming Limited – Game development studio for Astra and Bell-Fruit.
  • Innov8 Gaming Limited – Gaming machine developer supplying Category B3 and C gaming machines within the NTG and to external customers.

Mr. Weil continued, “Inspired and NTG currently operate in different segments but have much in common in terms of providing resources for our customers and their consumers.  This combination would provide additional resources for our core businesses and combine the great content and machine portfolio from each. We expect to be able to deliver meaningful value to our shareholders as the acquisition is integrated.”

Improved Operating Efficiencies

Inspired expects to achieve $12.3 million to $13.3 million of synergies through shared costs and increased scale. Inspired also expects to be able to make efficient use of shared manufacturing, engineering, software development, field maintenance and customer service to drive growth and cost savings after the transaction closes.  Inspired further expects to reduce capital deployed in the pub gaming sector following the closing of the transaction, as the sector continues its ongoing digital transformation.

Complementary Businesses Leveraging Core Competencies

Inspired plans to draw on the core strengths of Inspired and NTG to broaden offerings, bring differentiated gaming products to new sectors and geographies, accelerate key growth initiatives and offer enhanced capabilities, systems, field service and content.  The addition of NTG is expected to help diversify Inspired’s UK business and expand into contiguous customer segments with very little overlap of existing customers. Inspired’s position and expertise in server based gaming is expected to accelerate NTG’s development initiatives to transition the pub gaming sector from analog to digital gaming machines.

Inspired and NTG are both known for their product innovation and creative content. Together, the companies expect to offer an expansive combined game and machine portfolio to customers. Inspired and NTG are also well positioned to capitalize on further converting NTG’s game library for online deployment.

Transaction Terms and Execution

Inspired has agreed to acquire NTG for the EUR equivalent of US$120 million, subject to certain customary adjustments.  This consideration represents a multiple of approximately 5.5x NTG’s pre-synergy Adjusted EBITDA of £17.1 million, or $21.7 million[2], for the 12-month period ended December 31, 2018, and 3.5x after adjusting for the mid-point of estimated run-rate annual synergies of £9.6 million to £10.6 million, or $12.3 million to $13.3 million, as if they were achieved January 1, 2018.

The acquisition, which is subject to the approvals of regulatory authorities and other customary closing conditions, is expected to close during the third quarter of 2019.  In conjunction with the proposed transaction, Inspired is expected to refinance its existing indebtedness with a new £220 million GBP-equivalent term loan and £20 million revolving credit facility.  Inspired has obtained committed financing for the transaction, and the transaction is not subject to a financing contingency. The committed financing is expected to result in a reduction in cost of debt capital.

“The proposed financing is at a lower interest rate than our existing debt and is a major step in improving Inspired’s capital structure,” said Stewart Baker, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Inspired.  “Pro forma for the acquisition, adjusting for the mid-point of estimated run-rate annual synergies, the proposed financing implies net leverage of 3.0x[3].  It will position us with a stronger balance sheet and extended maturities, while also reducing our cost of capital which we believe will allow us to have more flexibility to capitalize on meaningful opportunities to grow our business.”

Casino Operations

The casino assets of Astra Games Limited are not included in the potential transaction.  At or prior to the closing of the Acquisition, Astra will transfer to Novomatic UK Gaming UK Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of NOVOMATIC GROUP, assets to the extent related to its casino operations.

Financial and Legal Advisory

Nomura served as financial advisor to Inspired. Sidley Austin LLP and Addleshaw Goddard LLP served as legal advisors to Inspired.  Nomura and Macquarie Capital have provided financing commitments to support the transaction.

 

About Inspired Entertainment, Inc.:

Inspired is a global games technology company, supplying Virtual Sports, Mobile Gaming and Server Based Gaming systems with associated terminals and digital content to regulated lottery, betting and gaming operators around the world. Inspired currently operates approximately 35,000 digital gaming terminals and supplies its Virtual Sports products through more than 40,000 retail channels and over 100 websites, in approximately 35 gaming jurisdictions worldwide. Inspired employs more than 650 employees in the UK and elsewhere, developing and operating digital games and networks.

SOURCE Inspired Entertainment, Inc.

George Miller started his career in content marketing and has started working as an Editor/Content Manager for our company in 2016. George has acquired many experiences when it comes to interviews and newsworthy content becoming Head of Content in 2017. He is responsible for the news being shared on multiple websites that are part of the European Gaming Media Network.

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NSoft Days – trend presentations for stakeholders

Zoltan Tundik

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Reading Time: 1 minute

 

NSoft is organizing a two-day immersion with future thinkers and do-ers. The NSoft days will be held on August 23-24, 2019 in order to present the how and why NSoft sets future trends.

Topics like how to implement AI into products, Machine Learning as well as the insight into the future of app building are to be presented to more than 60 business partners and are to provide an excellent networking opportunity. NSoft’s guests will be able to participate in a series of workshops and presentations, where NSoft’s team will be showcasing the most relevant global trends and the future of NSoft including Vision and Chameleon.

Additionally, NSoft’s guests will be able to participate at a must-see event Red Bull Cliff Diving. NSoft has decided to blend NSoft days with this world-know Mostar edition of this Red Bull event by sponsoring it and will host its guests at the VIP zone of the event.

In order to obtain in-depth information about the latest NSoft’s innovations and products, feel free to book a meeting with our representatives at sales@nsoft.com

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Approval of Foundation Level Gambling Industry Tester Specialist Syllabus by ISTQB®

Niji Narayan

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

International Software Testing Qualifications Board (ISTQB) is a software testing certification organisation that operates internationally, founded in Edinburgh in November 2002. The company has approved the release of 2019 version of the ISTQB® Gambling Industry Tester Specialist (GT) Syllabus.

The GT Syllabus gives essential understanding and knowledge to anyone involved in testing in the gambling industry and also reflects the current best practices and procedures for testing in the gambling industry.

The ISTQB® provides the new GT Syllabus as follows:

 

  1. To the ISTQB® Member Boards, to translate into their local language and to accredit training providers. Member boards may adapt the syllabus to their particular language needs and modify the references to adapt to their local glossary terms.
  2. To the certification bodies, to derive examination questions in their local language adapted to the learning objectives for this syllabus
  3. To the training providers, to produce courseware and determine appropriate teaching methods
  4. To the certification candidates, to prepare for the certification exam (either as part of a training course or independently)
  5. To the international software and systems engineering community, to advance the profession of software testing, and as a basis for books and articles.

 

ISTQB® President, Olivier Denoo, stated – “the focus of ISTQB® is towards addressing its customers main needs. The Gambling Industry Tester certification, will address a growing market of Gaming of all kinds, including Gambling games, which has a great potential for those developing and testing those games. We have shown with this certification we are not looking only for huge markets, but also on unique trends and customers who needs certifications in today’s growing IT market”.

Alon Linetzki, ISTQB® Marketing working group chair added: “as ISTQB® is trying to address evolving and new areas of testing and target Software Testers, came out this unique syllabus. It addresses the needs of a growing industry – Gaming and Gambling Testing – which this is the first syllabus in that domain”.

 

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iovation Research: Fraudsters Increasingly Leveraging Mobile Devices for Schemes

George Miller

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iovation Research: Fraudsters Increasingly Leveraging Mobile Devices for Schemes
Reading Time: 3 minutes

 

TransUnion company explores top continents and countries for risky mobile transactions, and types of behavior businesses to need to look for to catch mobile fraud

iovation, a TransUnion company, today released its recent research that about half of all risky online transactions appear to be coming from a mobile device. Specifically, in the first half of 2019 iovation saw 49% of all risky transactions come from mobile devices, up from 30% in 2018, 33% in 2017 and 25% in 2016.

“Fraudsters are like chameleons. They are always adapting their tactics to make it look like they’re legitimate customers,” said iovation’s Senior Director of Customer Success, Melissa Gaddis. “With well over half of all transactions now coming from mobile devices, our analysts increasingly see fraudsters either using mobile devices or making it look like their transactions are coming from mobile when in fact they are using a traditional desktop.”

Among its research, iovation found:

  • The top continents for mobile fraud: So far in 2019 it is North America with 59% of all risky transactions coming from mobile devices. In 2018, it was Asia at 53%. In 2017, it was North America with 55%. In 2016, it was North America again with 36%.

  • The top countries for mobile fraud: Gabon leads so far in 2019 with 85% of all risky transactions coming from mobile devices. It 2018, it was Japan with 79%. Papua New Guinea led in 2017 with 86%. In 2016, it was Bangladesh with 59%.

  • The top industries for mobile fraud: So far in 2019 it is telecommunications with 75% of all risky transactions coming from mobile devices. In 2018, it was gambling with 60%. Communities (for example social networks or online dating sites) led in 2017 at 59%. In 2016, it was healthcare with 58%.

To find fraudulent transactions from mobile devices, iovation suggests businesses closely analyze specific indicators including:

  • Mobile emulators: Fraudsters like to hide information by using emulators to make it look like their desktop device is a mobile device.

  • Orientation: Is a device staying in the same position or is it face down? These could be tell-tale signs of a bot or a fraudster emulating a mobile device.

  • SIM card country: Since fraudsters often try to mask their location, the SIM card country provides yet another method for identifying the true location of the end-user. Fraud analysts may find fraudsters that target their businesses tend to have devices from particular countries.

  • SIM card carrier name: Certain mobile carriers can have a higher percentage of fraudulent activity originating from them.

  • Currency: The type of currency tied to a device provides additional context to the region associated with the device. This can be another way to determine if the device is coming from a risky location.

  • Language: Much like countries, carriers and currency, the language used on a device provides additional context on the transaction which can help crack a fraud case when a fraudster is attempting to mask other aspects of their device.

  • Mobile OS version: Certain mobile operating system versions may correlate with fraud or abuse.

 

Mobile Transaction Jump

iovation found 61% of all online transactions came from mobile devices so far this year, up from 56% in 2018, 51% in 2017 and 45% in 2016. Europe and North America are consistently among the top continents for mobile transactions with 67% and 60% respectively so far this year. The top industry for mobile transactions so far in 2019 is communities with 73%.

For more insights into iovation’s findings along with new iovation features to catch mobile fraud, go to this blog post that includes an infographic.

Methodology

iovation came to its findings by analyzing the 30 billion online transactions it evaluated for fraud from January 2016 to June 30, 2019. To find the risky mobile transactions, it calculated the percent of risky transactions from mobile devices compared to overall risky transactions. For overall mobile transactions, it calculated the percent of mobile transactions compared to all online transactions. iovation defines risky transactions as those that typically result in fraud.

 

About iovation:

iovation, a TransUnion company, was founded with a simple guiding mission: to make the Internet a safer place for people to conduct business. Since 2004, the company has been delivering against that goal, helping brands protect and engage their customers, and keeping them secure in the complex digital world. Armed with the world’s largest and most precise database of reputation insights and cryptographically secure multifactor authentication methods, iovation safeguards tens of millions of digital transactions each day.

 

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