TAIPED said to accept improved lotteries bid

The state privatization fund (TAIPED) has reportedly accepted the improved offer by the OPAP-led consortium for the concession of the license to operate all state lotteries for the next 12 years, but the amended terms are said to have led to the departure of Italian lottery operator Lottomatica from the bidding consortium.

Skai radio reported on Wednesday that TAIPED has given its nod to the sole bid tabled for the license, and will issue a statement later in the day.

Reports suggest that the original bid had been for a deposit of 125 million euros for the license, followed by 30 million paid to the state in the first year and a minimum of 50 million euros per year thereafter. TAIPED rejected that offer on Monday and called for an improved one by Wednesday.

Lottomatica, that held a 33 percent stake in the bidding consortium, had reportedly vetoed a deposit in excess of 150 million euros, while TAIPED asked for 190 million euros to be paid up front, given also the dire need of the government to show some progress in the revenues collected from privatizations.

State-managed OPAP gaming company, that had a 34 percent stake in the consortium, is now said to have filled the vacuum left from the reported departure of Lottomatica, risen its stake to 67 percent and increased the deposit to an unspecified level. Reports on the Lottomatica departure have not yet been confirmed.

Minor stakeholders Intralot (16.5 percent) and Scientific Games (16.5 percent), are said to have given their consent to the increase of the deposit offered to TAIPED, as their contribution is not changed.

Developments, that will clearly burden OPAP’s shareholders, have led to an 1.44 percent decline in OPAP’s stock in the Athens bourse at 12.30 p.m., while the Intralot stock was gaining 2.98 percent.

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