Gala Coral completes sale of retail bingo division

Gala Coral completes sale of retail bingo division

Tuesday, December 22, 2015 Totally Gaming
Caledonia Investments has paid £241m for the 130 Gala clubs

Gala Coral has continued preparations for its proposed merger with Ladbrokes by completing the sale of its Gala Retail division.

Caledonia Investments, an investment trust company, has effectively become the biggest land-based bingo operator in the UK after paying £241m (€328.8m/$358.9m) for the 130 Gala clubs.

Under the agreement, Gala Coral will retain both the Gala brand and the websites Gala Retail and, while the bingo clubs will continue to trade through the Gala brand under licence.

Carl Leaver, chief executive of Gala Coral, said that he expected the Gala Bingo sites to “continue to thrive” under Caledonia. 

“We are very pleased to have completed the sale of Gala Retail,” said Leaver. “The disposal is another transformative step for Gala Coral, following the turnaround of the business over the past few years.

“We wish the Gala Retail team all the very best for the future and believe the business will continue to thrive under its new owners.

“Gala Coral remains focused on growing and developing our retail bookmaking and online businesses, and concluding the proposed merger with Ladbrokes.”

The acquisition of Gala Retail, which has more than 1.1 million active members and achieved turnover of around £300m in the year to September 2015, was completed after Caledonia was granted change of control approval by the UK Gambling Commission.

The move comes as Gala prepares for its proposed £2.3bn merger with Ladbrokes, which has been agreed by the latter’s shareholders but is still subject to approval from the UK Competition and Markets Authority.

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