Evolution is reportedly beginning its integration of slot developer NetEnt following the completion of its acquisition.
The live casino game developer was given the green light to acquire NetEnt by the Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority in September and the UK Competition and Markets Authority last month following a two-month investigation analysing whether the purchase would lessen the competition in the region’s market.
Evolution’s proposed SEK 19.6 billion acquisition was declared unconditional on November 23 and the acceptance period, which is now closed, was extended through to November 30.
As reported by iGamingBusiness, NetEnt shareholders backed the takeover, and thus Evolution has started a “total reorganisation” of NetEnt with the developer’s Chief Executive Therese Hillman set to support the integration before leaving the company in early 2021.
Reports state that NetEnt’s live casino business will be shut down as Evolution looks to streamlining its slot development businesses. Evolution notes that the move will have “consequences” for its business support units but reports that it is in line with the synergy goals announced when it first made the acquisition offer.
NetEnt will operate under the Evolution banner alongside the company’s Evolution, Ezugi, and Red Tiger Gaming brands, the latter of which was obtained through Evolution’s acquisition of NetEnt.
Evolution has confirmed that it’s initiated a compulsory buy-out procedure in accordance with the Swedish Companies Act to acquire all outstanding shares while NetEnt has applied to have its shares removed from the Nasdaq Stockholm exchange. Its last day of trading will be announced when the Nasdaq Stockholm exchange has made a decision.
The news comes as Evolution continues to expand its presence across the United States. Last month, Evolution announced a new partnership with Caesars Entertainment Inc., allowing the live casino game developer to launch its portfolio of games with the company’s online Caesars Casino and Sportsbook.
Evolution’s live games will be made available with the company’s online casino and sportsbook in Pennsylvania followed by New Jersey, and they can be accessed by the pa.caesarsonline.com website or through the iOS and Android Caesars Casino and Sportsbook PA smartphone app.
Johan Nordstrom, the Chief Commercial Officer at Evolution, said in a statement: “We are very proud indeed to be working with one of the biggest and more iconic brand names in the casino world. We look forward to helping Caesars achieve their goals in the enormously exciting US gaming market and beyond.”
Christian Stuart, the Head of Caesars Sports and Online Gaming for Caesars Entertainment Inc, added: “Caesars is bullish on the future of iGaming – and with that, it’s important to us to continue to provide our customers the best in online gambling with a superior experience and the latest technology. We’re excited for players to experience the fun and action of playing at a live casino table, from your home or anywhere in Pennsylvania.”
In addition to landing a partnership with Caesars Entertainment, the live casino game developer has also signed an agreement with the FanDuel Group to offer its live casino games to all FanDuel casino customers across the United States.
All of Evolution’s live casino games, initially from the company’s Pennsylvanian live casino studio, will be made available with FanDuel’s online casino in Pennsylvania along with all of Ezugi’s game portfolio which was integrated as part of Evolution in 2019.
Jesse Chemtob, the GM of Casino at the FanDuel Group, said of the agreement: “We’re really excited to offer our loyal customers more Live Casino games. We see Live Casino as a key driver for continued online casino market growth in the US, and FanDuel will now have access to Evolution’s entire Live Casino portfolio.”
Johan Nordstrom added: “Late last year we signed a landmark deal with Flutter Entertainment brands Paddy Power and Betfair. Now, we are delighted to be working with another Flutter Brand, FanDuel, in the fast-growing US market.”
To further enhance its reach across the United States, Evolution has also signed an agreement with Wynn Sports Interactive, allowing the game developer to offer its entire catalogue of live casino games to Wynn’s online sportsbook in New Jersey, with other states to follow shortly after.
While working to expand its player reach across the world, Evolution has also been working hard on new games. Last month, the game developer launched the world’s first-ever online live craps game.
The new game, which is set in an authentic underground, speakeasy-style live casino studio, is a unique online and live version of the popular dice game. Evolution’s adaptation of the game follows all of the original rules but takes full advantage of today’s modern-day technology.
According to Evolution, the developers have implemented numerous special features to their game and have made it easier to understand for both new and experienced players as part of a goal to offer users an unparalleled experience.
Todd Haushalter, the Chief Product Officer at Evolution, said in a statement: “Craps completes the Evolution portfolio in terms of offering every game you can find in a land-based casino. Developing the game and capturing the unique excitement of the Craps table, but in an online setting, was a complex project.
“The team has done a phenomenal job and we now have a fantastic finished product that I know will thrill Craps enthusiasts in the US, Europe, and beyond, as well as attracting legions of new fans.”
He added: “We understand that not everyone knows how to play Craps. That’s why the game has both an ‘Easy Mode’ and a simple online interactive tutorial that clearly explains how to play and enjoy the game. Craps has been our most requested new game by both players and operators for years – not it’s finally here. I think players are going to love it.”