Global gaming giant Novomatic is close to completing its AU$500 million acquisition of a 52.5% stake in Australian slot machine manufacturer Ainsworth Game Technology, with approvals now received from the “majority of gaming regulators” according to Ainsworth Chairman Graeme Campbell.
Addressing shareholders at the firm’s Annual General Meeting on Tuesday, Campbell revealed that the long-awaited deal comprising the majority stake of founder Len Ainsworth was now imminent.
“The regulatory approval process for the sale of shares by Mr Ainsworth to Novomatic has progressed well,” he said. “I am pleased to advise that Novomatic has now received the necessary approvals from the majority of gaming regulators, including Nevada. We expect, subject to final regulatory approvals, to report completion as planned.
“I am encouraged by Ainsworth’s progress in executing on our planned strategic priorities.”
It has been almost two years now since Novomatic and Ainsworth first entered talks over a potential acquisition and well over 12 months since Ainsworth shareholders voted in favor of the move in June 2016.
Once complete, Novomatic’s international presence is expected to significantly increase the Australian company’s reach, particularly through Asia and Europe.
Ainsworth also reported its full year financial results on Tuesday, which saw group-wide revenue fall slightly by 1% year-on-year to AU$282.1 million on the back of difficult domestic conditions. The company’s Australian revenue fell 9% to AU$74.1 million in FY17, offsetting a 2% increase internationally to AU$208 million.
EBITDA declined 27% from AU$95.8 million to AU$70.3 million while profit fell 1% to AU$170 million.
On a positive note, “Rest of the World” revenue, which excludes Australia, North America and Latin America, grew 54% to AU$28.1 million thanks to an “increase in unit volumes driven by improved Europe performance and Novomatic AG synergies.”