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BlueBet requests ASX trading halt amid acquisition talks

| By Robert Fletcher
BlueBet Holdings has requested a trading halt on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) amid talk of a potential acquisition agreement, with reports suggesting the operator could merge with Betr.
BlueBet ASX Betr

The trading halt was requested today (10 April), with BlueBet contacting the ASX over the matter. This halt, BlueBet said, is only temporary and it aims to begin trading again before the end of the week.

BlueBet said this is necessary pending an announcement about a “material acquisition” and equity capital raising transaction. The halt is also in response to a price query letter from the ASX after it contacted the change about the trading pause.

The trading halt will continue until BlueBet publishes a further update to the market, or at the start of trading on 12 April whichever occurs first. 

BlueBet is not disclosing any further information about the possible acquisition at this time.

BlueBet eying Betr merger?

While details of the potential acquisition are limited, reports in the Australian media suggest it could involve a merger with Betr.

The Australian Financial Review (AFR) reports Betr could sign an all-scrip merger deal with BlueBet. 

Betr was previously backed by News Corp but is now run by a consortium of investors, led by Matt Tripp. The veteran bookmaker previously led BetEasy as CEO, overseeing its transformation into an online operator.

This is not the first time a possible merger between BlueBet and Betr has been mentioned. Back in January, AFR said talks were at a preliminary stage for the brands potentially joining forces.

Neither BlueBet nor Betr have commented on the reports, although the trading halt suggests a deal could be close.

Net loss widens for BlueBet in H1

The reports come on the back of a mixed first half for BlueBet

For the six months to 31 December, revenue increased by 12.6% year-on-year to AU$27.8m (£14.5 m/€16.9m/US$18.2m). BlueBet said this was driven by record wagering turnover of $319.5m for the half.

The period saw BlueBet grow its Australian business, with revenue up 13.0% to $27.9m, with turnover also up 6.9% to $298.7m.

In North America, BlueBet posted a loss of $131,000 for H1. However, turnover jumped by 1,050.0% to $20.7m. Active customers also increased during H1 in line with expansion into new states.

Spending was higher across the business, with this offsetting revenue growth and leading to a $10.4m net loss, compared to $9.9m in the previous year. 

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