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Non-Tech : SGMS - Software Gaming

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From: JakeStraw1/20/2006 9:06:01 AM
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Scientific Games to Acquire EssNet AB Online Lottery Assets for $60M
biz.yahoo.com

Friday January 20, 8:30 am ET

NEW YORK, Jan. 20 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Scientific Games Corporation (Nasdaq: SGMS) has signed an agreement to acquire substantially all of the online lottery assets of the Swedish firm EssNet AB for 460 MSEK or approximately $60 million. EssNet specializes in online lottery systems and terminals to run numbers games, sports betting, instant tickets and mobile games on a national level. EssNet's lottery customers include seven states in Germany, the national lotteries of Hungary and Norway, Golden Casket and Tattersall's Lottery in Australia, and other national lotteries. EssNet's reported online lottery revenues for the first six months of 2005 were approximately 130 MSEK or approximately $16 million.

The acquisition will include substantially all of EssNet's existing online lottery contracts, as well as all technology and intellectual property pertaining to its online lottery business. Scientific Games will also inherit EssNet's staff of technical experts and game designers, a key to its selection as "IT Challenger of the Year" by the Swedish business magazine Veckans Affarer.

"This acquisition will not only boost our international lottery revenues and market share, it will give us fresh access to some key markets including Scandinavia, Australasia and Europe, particularly in Germany where it brings our online lottery customer list to 13 of the 16 states," said Lorne Weil, Chairman and CEO of Scientific Games. "We are confident that this acquisition will integrate well with our existing operations, provide a platform for additional growth, and assist us in helping our instant ticket customers grow their business."

The sale is subject to certain closing conditions including regulatory and customer approvals, purchase price adjustments, and other specified conditions. Scientific Games will finance the purchase under its existing $250 million revolving credit facility. The company expects the acquisition of EssNet to be accretive to earnings.
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