Rank and 888 give up on William Hill takeover

William Hill shopfront

William Hill: bookmaker rejected two bids from Rank and 888

  PICTURE: David Dew  

 By Tom Kerr 4:56PM 18 AUG 2016 

RANK and 888 announced on Thursday they would not make a further offer for William Hill.

The two firms had proposed to merge the three companies and made two bids to that effect, but both were firmly opposed by the Hills board.

Hills dismissed the bids as “highly opportunistic” and said they undervalued the retail and online giant.

Rank and 888 had until Sunday afternoon to make an improved offer but instead on Thursday said they would be withdrawing from the fray.

Gareth Davis, William Hill chairman, said: “We note the Consortium’s confirmation that it no longer intends to make an offer for William Hill.

“We will continue to focus our efforts on our strategy to deliver value for shareholders. The team has a clear plan to grow by diversifying digitally and internationally and four priorities to get us there.

“We have had a good start to the second half of the year and the board now expects operating profit for 2016 to be at the top end of the previously guided £260-280m range.”

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