by Renee Israel
The British sports betting group, Sportech Plc. announced that it had
successfully carried out a refinancing procedure, replacing previous loan
facilities which are set to expire next year.
Sportech, the London listed group which is considered one of the most
reputable and solid in Europe, secured the £75 million in multi currency credit
facility, including up to £5 million of ancillary working capital.
Sportech essentially secured the new refinancing in order to support
In a press release released by the group about Sportech carrying out a
refinancing procedure, it stated that key highlights of the refinancing
"New multi bank facilities to provide debt refinancing; banking relationships
strengthened with new multi bank structure replacing single bank arrangement;
overall size of facilities increased by 25% to support growth of the business;
new arrangements provide flexible financial covenants."
New Multi Bank Credit Facility
The new credit facility has been provided by multiple banks, including
Barclays Bank Plc., the Royal Bank of Scotland and Bank of Scotland Plc.
The press release noted: "Of particular note, the Group has secured agreement
with the lenders that the Facility will remain in place in its entirety should
the group be ultimately successful in its ongoing Spot the Ball VAT claim
against HM Revenue and Customs, due to be heard at the First Tier Tax Tribunal
in October of this year."
The new debt has an initial debt maturity rate until the end of August, 2015,
although there is the option of extending the request for a further year, with
the agreement of the lenders.
"The facility replaces the Group's previous amortising loan facilities
provided solely by the Bank of Scotland, which were due to expire in July 2013
and consisted at the time of refinancing of a £55.5 million term loan and a £3
million UK working capital facility."
Sportech has Operational Flexibility
Sportech management is pleased with the new refinancing which will give the
group operational flexibility to complete its medium term plans, the group said.
The UK based business has a presence in over 30 countries and operates its
business out of three main divisions: football pools, pools/tote racing
technology and services, and e-gaming.
Some of the e-gaming brands run by Sportech include Vernons Bingo, Vernons
Casino and Vernons 247.
The group also owns and operates The Football Pools, the oldest football
gaming company in the world which was founded in 1923. The Pools serve 600,000
players every week.