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Catena Media plc on Thursday entered into an agreement to sell its AskGamblers business and associated global casino brands for €45 million on a cash and debt free basis to a wholly owned subsidiary of Gaming Innovation Group Inc., an international provider of services to the online casino and sports betting industry.

The transaction, which is expected to complete in Q1 2023, involves Catena Media selling two wholly owned subsidiaries in Malta and Serbia that operate the AskGamblers brand and the associated online casino brands JohnSlots and NewCasinos.

The purchase price shall be paid in cash in three tranches, with €20 million to be paid on closing, €10 million to be paid 12 months from closing and the remaining €15 million to be paid 24 months from closing.

The divested businesses’ intangible assets had a combined net book value of €27.2 million as of 31st October 2022. In the first nine months of 2022 the operations reported a double-digit decline in revenue to €12.9 million. EBITDA for the same period totalled EUR 8.4 million, or EUR 6.2 million including central group overheads.

Catena Media CEO Michael Daly said: “Today’s agreement is a major step on our journey to focus the business on online sports betting and casino affiliation in high-growth, regulated markets in the Americas. I am confident that in Gaming Innovation Group we have found a buyer that will provide a strong environment for AskGamblers and the other brands and their talented people to develop and grow.”

Richard Brown, CEO of Gaming Innovation Group, said: “We are extremely excited to take over the AskGamblers brand. Combining it with our media technology and operational capabilities provides a great opportunity to expand our global reach and to deliver a path for AskGamblers to continue with its strong evolution. We look forward to integrating the staff and website assets into GiG.”

Catena Media’s previously-communicated strategic review has concluded in a clear focus on the fast-growing, regulated North American markets. The group intends to continue streamlining the business in line with this focus. This includes divesting from markets and assets, such as the Financial Trading brands and the group’s remaining European brands, which third parties have shown interest in acquiring. These approaches are currently under evaluation.

Commenting on Catena Media’s future strategic direction, Mr Daly said: “We are now in an even stronger financial position and equipped to capture the exciting market opportunities ahead of us and to take steps to broaden Catena Media’s exposure and access to the US capital markets over time.”

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