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GiG completes KaFe Rocks acquisition ahead of proposed business split

| By Richard Mulligan
Gaming Innovation Group (GiG) is targeting further expansion in North America after completing its previously announced acquisition of KaFe Rocks.

GiG will pay a total of €35m for the affiliate group, which includes a €15m upfront cash payment. KaFe Rocks operates a portfolio of more than 30 brands in more than 20 markets, including Time2Play and USCasinos.

Coming a year after its acquisition of AskGamblers, GiG said the move bolsters GiG Media’s position within the online casino affiliation space, particularly in North America.

The group is to be split into two separate entities – GiG Media and Platform & Sportsbook – during H1 2024.

GiG added that the acquisition will further accelerate the diversification of GiG Media’s business. This is a key strategic goal for the business, mitigating overall risk by having more customers, websites and markets to drive revenue growth.

The synergies between the two entities are expected to result in a minimum revenue of €23m in 2024 for the KaFe Rocks assets. The group said an EBITDA margin exceeding 45% translates to a 2024 EV/EBITDA multiple of approximately 3.6x for the acquisition.

Jonas Warrer, group CEO, said: “Our goal is to maintain our position as the leading casino affiliate in the industry and to expand further in the North American market. The inclusion of KaFe Rocks aligns perfectly with these objectives.

“We’ve identified a thriving business led by an exceptionally skilled team. We eagerly anticipate integrating KaFe Rocks into the GiG family, unlocking additional business value to benefit our partners and investors.”

Kafe Rocks targets “new heights”

KaFe Rocks welcomed the acquisition when it was announced in November 2023, a year after a takeover bid by Glitnor Group collapsed.

Aimee Speight, spokesperson for KaFe Rocks, said at the time: “It’s a momentous occasion for KaFe Rocks to join forces with GiG Media. We considered several buyers but were persuaded to go with GiG Media based on the strong performance the company has shown over the last few years. Joining GiG Media, we are optimistic about seeing KaFe Rocks business venturing into new heights.”

Back in June, the affiliate announced that it was rebranding to Time2Play Media. Yet the business remains under the KaFe Rocks Ltd name.

New beginnings for GiG

The company completed its acquisition of AskGamblers and other domains from Catena Media in January 2023. Some €20m was paid on purchase, with the remaining €10m and €15m to be paid in January 2024 and January 2025.

The group chose to pursue a split after launching a strategic review in February. The idea of splitting the business was the main focus of the review. The split involves the GiG Media affiliate arm and Platform & Sportsbook divisions, becoming separate entities.

The Media arm includes all GiG media offerings such as GiG’s affiliate lead generation services. Platform & Sportsbook covers technical igaming platforms including Sportnco, which GiG acquired for €51.3m (£43.2m/$56.7m) in April 2022. Also included in the second division is front-end development and other managed services.

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