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Flutter snaps up online bingo group Tombola in £402m deal

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Flutter Entertainment said it had ‘long admired’ the online bingo firm (PA) (PA Archive)
Flutter Entertainment said it had ‘long admired’ the online bingo firm (PA) (PA Archive)

The owner of Paddy Power and Betfair has agreed to buy UK bingo group Tombola for £402 million.

Flutter Entertainment said it had “long admired” the online bingo firm as it unveiled the all-cash deal.

Tombola’s founder Phil Cronin, who set up the firm 16 years ago, will leave the business after the acquisition, with he and his family expected to net a fortune.

Based across sites in Sunderland and Gibraltar Tombola has more than 700 employees and around 400,000 average monthly users.

It made underlying earnings of £38.5 million in the year to April 30 on revenues of £164 million.

The deal is set to complete in the first quarter of next year.

Peter Jackson chief executive of Flutter, said: “Tombola is a business we have long admired for its product expertise, highly recreational customer base and focus on sustainable play.

“The brand aligns closely with Flutter’s safer gambling strategy, a key area of focus for us.”

Tombola was the first major UK-focused operator to introduce both mandatory staking and deposit limits.

More than 80% of its revenues come from the UK, with 16% from Italy and Spain.

Mr Jackson added: “As the time comes for Phil to hand over the reins, I would like to thank him for building the success story that the business is today, and I look forward to welcoming the Tombola team to Flutter and growing a sustainable business for the future together.”

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