Tabcorp Shareholders Overwhelmingly Approve Company Breakup

Tabcorp, the Australian gaming operator, is a step closer to dividing the company. Shareholders have approved a demerger plan the company began working on almost a year ago.

Tabcorp’s logo. The gaming company’s shareholders overwhelmingly support the decision to split its operations. (Image: Private Equity Insights)

The wait is almost over for Tabcorp. Yesterday, the company’s shareholders agreed to allow it to move forward with a scheme that will segregate its lottery business from its wagering, media and gaming services.

Tabcorp didn’t find any resistance during the vote, which New South Wales approved in March. 98.78% of the votes supported the demerger in Tabcorp’s General Meeting, while only 0.17% opposed it. The next stop is to receive final approval from NSW’s Supreme Court, which could arrive as early as May 20.

Next Up, a New Tabcorp

Given that everyone has approved the demerger to this point, there’s no reason to expect the Supreme Court to stand in the way. Once it greenlights the scheme, Tabcorp will introduce The Lottery Corporation (TLC) as its new lottery arm. It would then launch the company on the Australian Securities Exchange on May 24.

The goal of the demerger was to stop financial hemorrhaging at the company and, possibly, sell the wagering and media arm. There was previously a lot of interest in the latter; however, most of that fizzled. Tabcorp felt the offers were too low and wasn’t willing to lower its standards.

TLC is going to include all of the operations, except gaming, once held by gaming operator Tatts before Tabcorp purchased that company. The second business to emerge following the demerger will be New Tabcorp, which will include wagering, gaming and media services.

There was a chance that not even shareholder approval could move the deal forward. Racing NSW had some issues with the company that threatened to be a permanent roadblock. An 11th-hour deal between Tabcorp and the regulatory body removed that roadblock, according to The Australian Financial Review.

Racing NSW was concerned that the plan might interfere with the state’s racing sector. With everyone’s attention on post-COVID-19 recovery, any possibility of negative financial impact is a potential problem.

However, Racing NSW’s CEO Peter V’Landys told the media outlet that he and Tabcorp came to an agreement late last week. While he wasn’t willing to supply any details, he stated that the deal “no longer exposes” the entity to potential financial losses.

Tabcorp Says Bienvenue to France

Tabcorp has announced its first big deal subsequent to the vote. TAB bettors will benefit from more stable dividends on French racing. This comes through a new commingling arrangement between Tabcorp and France’s main betting operator, PMU, a French gambling operator specialized on horserace betting.

This new deal allows Australian bettors to combine their bets into a European-hosted pool for the first time. This will result in stabler and deeper pools for gallop and harness racing in France.

Currently, Tabcorp’s Sky Channel broadcasts at most two to three French meetings a day. The new deal could allow for additional meetings. PMU’s pool, via the Tabcorp PGI hub, will add TAB win and place bets on French racing.

This new arrangement is a continuation of existing racing deals from Hong Kong, New Zealand, Singapore and South Africa.


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