Oaktree Capital Management is one of many asset management firms with its eyes on the global gaming ecosystem. It’s adding to its footprint through the acquisition of Interblock, a gaming supplier based in Slovenia.
US-based Oaktree and Interblock announced the acquisition in a joint press statement issued Tuesday. Oaktree, which almost owned a piece of Crown Resorts in Australia, presented the “strategic purchase” as an “investment in further bolstering Interblock’s market leadership in the rapidly expanding electronic table games market.”
The statement added that Interblock, a privately held company, will continue to be an independent business. The announcement didn’t divulge the financial details of the acquisition, and neither company has offered additional information.
Innovating the ETG Space
Interblock supplies semi- and fully-automated electronic table games (ETG) and video gaming machines to casinos, mostly in Asian markets. However, its gaming solutions are also used in all corners of the world, including Australia, Europe, Latin America, and North America.
The acquisition follows “strong growth over the last six years” for Interblock, according to its CEO, John Connelly. Partnering with Oaktree, which has a presence in Macau and elsewhere in Asia, will help solidify the company’s place in the market.
The release described Oaktree as “a leader among global investors managers, specializing in alternative investment strategies, with assets under management of $164 billion as of March 31.”
The acquisition follows almost a year after Interblock scored a victory in South Korea. Last July, it announced the installation of a 64-seat Diamond Stadium environment in the Kangwon Land Casino.
This is the country’s biggest casino, and the only Korean casino that allows admission for Koreans, as well as foreigners. This was Interblock’s first product placement at the state-run casino, and followed the successful bid to have an ETG Stadium on its casino floor.
Interblock, a partner of Playboy and the NHL, recently received high-profile recognition for one of its more innovative gaming solutions. The Casino Awards (formerly known as the British Casino Awards) singled it out in the Best Electronic Table Gaming Product category for its Universal Cabinet, which can support roulette, blackjack, craps, baccarat, Sic Bo, and the newly released Big Six.
Oaktree Comes to the Table
The strategic acquisition will lead to Oaktree gaining a seat on the board of the privately-held gaming supplier. As a result, David Quick, Special Situations Group Managing Director for Oaktree, will become part of the company, helping to guide its growth.
Quick said in a separate statement that Interblock offers “significant market leadership” and an “attractive financial profile.” These traits and others, with the support of Oaktree, will help Interblock achieve its long-term goals.
Oaktree backs a number of companies in the gaming and hospitality spaces, including J&J Ventures and Cannery Casino Resorts. It tried to work a deal to purchase a slice of Crown Resorts last year amid the latter’s scandal, but walked away empty-handed. Oaktree put about $1.5 billion on the table before Crown politely declined.
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