London-listed betting and gaming operator William Hill has acquired a stake in iLottery solutions provider NeoGames.

William Hill has acquired a 29.4 per cent stake in NeoGames for a total cash consideration of US$25m, with an option to acquire the remaining 70.6 per cent within five years.

Founded in 2005, NeoGames was a pioneer of online scratch cards before going on to develop a range of interactive lottery solutions for lottery rights holders.

The company's lottery clients include Santa Casa in Portugal, the Czech Republic's Sazka, and Italy's Sisal, with a primary focus on the US market, where it currently provides iLottery solutions to the Michigan State Lottery via the NeoPollard joint venture.

"The emergent online Lottery market is an exciting new opportunity in the gambling sector and NeoGames is a disruptive technology operator offering customers a great experience and lottery rights holders a compelling alternative to established retail lottery operators," said William Hill chief executive James Henderson.

The acquisition will see William Hill appoint two representatives to the board of NeoGames, as well as providing the company with a $15m working capital facility.

Ilan Rosen, chief executive of NeoGames, commented: "We are excited by this strategic investment and partnership with William Hill which, apart from being a strong vote of confidence in our company and future expansion plans by one of the leading players in the gambling world, also opens up promising areas for synergies between our companies in the online lottery market, bringing William Hill's expertise and excellence in areas such as sports betting and omni-channel growth."

The announcement of the acquisition accompanied the release of William Hill's results for the half year, which showed a 35 per cent fall in pre-tax profit for the period on revenue of £808.1m.

Shares in William Hill plc (Co. Data) (LSE:WMH) closed in London Thursday, prior to the announcement, up 1.38 per cent at 410.90 pence per share.

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