LONDON (Alliance News) - bwin.party digital entertainment PLC saw its shares rise Tuesday after a US investment manager late Monday said that it has agreed in principle to acquire a stake of about 6.1% in the online gaming company from its founders.
In a statement, SpringOwl Gibraltar Partners B Ltd, a Cayman company which is managed by US investment manager Cumberland Associates LLC, said it has agreed to buy just over 49.8 million bwin.party shares from Emerald Bay Ltd and Stinson Ridge Ltd, funds owned by the company's founders.
Ruth Parasol DeLeon and Russell DeLeon, who founded the company, said last October that they would sell their stakes to allow bwin.party to get a license to operate in New Jersey in the US.
New Jersey recently became the third US state to open a newly regulated online gaming market, attracting some of the world's biggest companies. However, under the rules of getting an license, big shareholders in gaming groups had to submit individual license applications. The DeLeon's decided not to do that because they were getting divorced and wanted privacy. They each had a stake of 7.16% in the company at the end of October.
SpringOwl said that under the deal, it has the right to appoint one director to bwin.party's board.
bwin.party shares were up 5.1% at 118.8 pence Tuesday morning, the biggest rise on the FTSE 250.
By Steve McGrath; email@example.com; @SteveMcGrath1
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