New South Wales court approves Tabcorp lottery demerger

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Tabcorp will lodge a copy of the orders made by the court with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) on 23 May, with the scheme will be effective on that date.

Shares in demerged business, which will be named The Lottery Corporation, are expected to begin trading on the ASX on 24 May on a deferred settlement basis. Tabcorp’s securities will trade on an ex-demerger entitlements basis, also from 24 May.

Tabcorp said that the demerger is expected to be implemented on 1 June, with shares in The Lottery Corporation to commence trading on a normal basis on the ASX the following day.

The court approval comes after Tabcorp shareholders last week overwhelmingly voted to approve plans for the demerger. Some 98.78% of the total votes cast during Tabcorp’s General Meeting and Scheme Meeting were in favour of the demerger, with just 0.17% voting against the proposal and 0.89% votes classed as open votes.

Tabcorp first announced plans to spin off its Lotteries and Keno arm in July 2021 following a strategic review of its operations.

The review begun four months earlier and looked at structural and ownership options for Tabcorp to create more value for shareholders, including potentially selling off its wagering and media business. 

At the time, Tabcorp said a number of unsolicited proposals had been made for the division, including an AU$3.5bn bid from Entain and $4bn bids from Betmakers and Apollo Global, but the business said none of these represented the true value of the division. 

While the review led to Tabcorp keeping the wagering arm, it instead decided to spin off the lotteries business, which would result in two separate companies. 

One of these businesses was renamed The Lottery Corporation and comprise most of the former Tatts business, but without gaming services. The second business was named New Tabcorp and would include the wagering and media arm alongside gaming services.

In March, New South Wales court approved a meeting that allowed shareholders to vote on the demerger, shortly after which Tabcorp outlined the strategies for each segment of its business following the demerger.

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