Rank Group, 888 Mulling Possible Joint Offer for William Hill

Gaming companies Rank Group Plc and 888 Holdings Plc are considering a joint offer to buy competitor William Hill Plc.

The two companies see “significant industrial logic in the combination,” which will deliver “substantial revenue and cost synergies,” according to an e-mailed statement. The companies have until August 21 to formally announce their intention to make an offer for William Hill, and no formal approach has been made yet to its board, Rank and 888 said in the statement.

The bid could be worth 3 billion pounds ($3.9 billion), with Morgan Stanley, PricewaterhouseCoopers and lawyers Slaughter & May working at the transaction, The Sunday Times reported, citing unidentified people.

William Hill’s Chief Executive Officer James Henderson was ousted last week after almost two years in the role, as the bookmaker is struggling to keep pace in the fast-growing world of online betting. The board made the decision to replace Henderson and engaged an international search firm to find his successor.

The company’s share price dropped to 2.4 pounds this month, down from a record high of 4.9 pounds in 2013, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

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