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  • Aristocrats (ALL) $4 billion takeover of gambling software giant Playtech has been blocked by shareholders
  • While the majority of proxy votes were in favour of the deal, votes cast fell short of the 75 per cent threshold required to implement the acquisition
  • Aristocrats says this was due to a group of investors that “built a blocking stake” while refusing to engage with either the company or Playtech
  • CEO Trevor Coker says the outcome is disappointing and the company will switch its focus to accelerating online real money gaming scaling options
  • Shares are down 1.7 per cent to $40.59

Aristocrats (ALL) $5 billion takeover of gambling software giant Playtech has been blocked by shareholders.

While based on proxy votes, the company saw the majority of votes cast in favour of the acquisition, however fell short of the 75 per cent threshold required to implement the deal under Isle of Man law.

The total votes in favour of the resolutions were 56 per cent at the Court Meeting and 54 per cent at the General Meeting.

Aristocrat said a group of investors had emerged after the announcement of the deal and had “built a blocking stake” while refusing to engage with either the company or Playtech.

CEO and Managing Director, Trevor Croker said it is a disappointing outcome and he labelled the developments since the announcement of the takeover as “highly unusual”.

“The emergence of a certain group of shareholders who built a blocking stake while refusing to engage with either ourselves or Playtech materially impacted the prospects for the success of our offer, which had been recommended by the Board of Playtech.”

“We will always take a highly disciplined, strategic approach to our investment choices, consistent with our customer-centric philosophy”

“Aristocrat has entered into 2022 with excellent operational momentum, flexibility and resilience with continued strong product-led performance across Gaming and Pixel United.

“We look forward to providing further detail to shareholders at our upcoming AGM later this month.”

Moving forward, the company said it will shift its focus to accelerating plans for alternative online real money gaming scaling options while continuing to execute its growth strategy.

Shares were down 1.7 per cent to $40.59 at 10:45 am AEDT.

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