Scientific Games' deal with Brookfield Business Partners will net it $5.825 billion in cash plus up to $225 million as an earnout

Scientific Games Still Streamlining To Concentrate On iGaming, Sheds Lottery Business For $6 Billion

Even as the iGaming market seems to become more complex, with a constant influx of operators and content providers, Scientific Games Corporation (SG) is working to make its business simpler. To that end, the Las Vegas-based company announced yesterday that it reached an agreement to sell its lottery business for more than $6 billion to Brookfield Business Partners, a private equity company headquartered in Bermuda.

SG President and CEO Barry Cottle said of selling SG Lottery:

“The significant near-term proceeds from this transaction, as well as our previously announced sale of sports betting, will transform our balance sheet and provide the financial flexibility to invest organically and inorganically to accelerate our strategies. This marks a major milestone and puts us on a clear path to achieve our vision to become the leading cross-platform global game company and unlock our full value for shareholders.”

Last month, SG sold its sports betting business, OpenBet, to Endeavor Group Holdings for $1.2 billion. It had indicated earlier this year that it planned on exiting both those areas of business.

SG didn’t immediately respond today to Online Poker Report‘s request for comment about its iGaming plans.

On its site today, SG still described itself this way:

“End-to-End Gaming and Lottery Solutions: Scientific Games is a world leader in entertainment – offering dynamic games, systems and services for casino, lottery, social gaming, online gaming and sports betting.”

SG Lottery serves 130 entities in 50 countries

By Q2 2022, about 130 government and “non-government” lottery entities in more than 50 countries will be working with Brookfield.

That’s when the sale closes and SG gets “$6.05 billion, consisting of $5.825 billion in cash and an earn-out of up to $225 million.”

SG said in its announcement:

“It provides an innovative suite of turn-key solutions covering the entire lottery ecosystem, including instant and terminal-generated lottery games, sports betting, lottery systems and retail technology and the fast-growing iLottery market. The Lottery business is the market leader in instant games with a broad array of products and services powering approximately 69% of instant product retail sales globally.”

It’s true that US online lotteries are growing. On Oct. 19, Connecticut launched its online casino and sportsbook marketplace, with iLottery coming soon from the Connecticut Lottery Corporation (CLC).

For jurisdictions with online lotteries, those sales helped alleviate losses – or create profits – amid pandemic-related retail ticket sale slumps.

SG Lottery CEO Patrick McHugh said in yesterday’s announcement:

“I am confident that, with Brookfield’s support, we will have the flexibility and agility to expand our deep product portfolio to meet our customers’ evolving needs and maximize lottery beneficiary proceeds across the globe, enabling us to capture the significant opportunities we see ahead.”

The statement added that SG Lottery will remain headquartered in Atlanta.

SG’s iGaming future

SG says unequivocally that it sees iGaming as its future.

The headline announcing its plans to showcase its products at the 2021 Global Gaming Expo (G2E) read, “Scientific Games Is Driving the Future of Gaming.”

SG CEO Cottle said:

“We’re progressing rapidly in our strategy and our vision to become the leading cross-platform global game company.”

The main highlight of the statement was the iGaming content and platform product OpenGaming. 

SG describes OpenGaming as an “end-to-end iGaming ecosystem, providing immersive player experiences with easy, direct access to an unmatched global network of studios, operators, games, features and technology.” The platform features more than 4,400 gaming titles.

OpenGaming features Playtech‘s software, which was part of a “mutual distribution agreement” the companies reached in July.

Speaking of Playtech and the increasing number of companies entering the US iGaming space, Australia’s Aristocrat Leisure declared on Oct. 17 that it will pay $2.9 billion to acquire Playtech.

Perhaps no matter how hard SG tries, US iGaming isn’t going to get much simpler anytime soon.

- Heather Fletcher is the lead writer with OnlinePokerReport. She's a career journalist, with bylines in The New York Times, Adweek and other publications. Reach her at [email protected]
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