Betsson AB, the Swedish gaming company with Malta-based operations, has acquired Betsafe, a private gaming company based on the island offering sports betting, casino and poker to clients primarily in the Nordic countries, according to an announcement.

The acquisition will place Betsson among the largest gaming companies in Malta with over 320 locally based employees.

Betsson acquired Betsafe from a number of private individuals, some of whom are founders and employees. Betsson will pay an up-front purchase price of €32.5 million, of which around half is payable in cash and the other half in Betsson B shares based on a historical 30-day average price of the Betsson share. An additional purchase price, based on the development of the acquisition and the integration during 2011, may become payable by Betsson, implying the total maximum purchase price is €60 million.

Through the acquisition, Betsson strengthens its platform in the Nordic region, which creates a strong base for future growth.

Last year, Betsafe increased its revenues by 119 per cent, and revenues to April 30, 2011 amounted to €33.4 million. By last March, the number of real money players amounted to 84,000 and the number of employees was 148.

Betsson intends to retain all Betsafe staff as well as all the brands of both companies. Betsafe’s management, including the founders André and Christer Lavold and the chief executive Henrik Persson, will become part of the Betsson operational management team in Malta.

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