October 6, 2009 -– The international private equity fund Monitor Clipper Partners L.P. (MCP), the English fund Cambria, and Microgame S.p.A have signed an agreement whereby MCP will invest into the firm, which is the leading service provider for online gaming in Italy.
As a result of the investment, MCP will become the majority shareholder, while the founding shareholders Fabrizio D' Aloia and Massimiliano Casella will reaffirm their commitment by reinvesting into the company.
The Cambria fund, presided over by Mario Mauri, entered into the company's share capital two years ago in order to help guide the growth of Microgame and concludes its investment with extreme satisfaction over the recent impressive development of the company.
As a result of the transaction, MCP will own up to 70% of the share capital of the company, while management will own the remainder. The key managers of the company will be unchanged as Fabrizio D' Aloia will remain Chairman and CEO and Massimiliano Casella will remain in charge of Sales and Marketing.
Microgame, founded in 1996, is a qualified independent gaming service provider, authorized by the Autonomous Administration of State Monopolies (AAMS). The company is the number one service provider in Italy and the leader in remote gaming with market shares in poker and sports betting of 25% and 28% respectively. Currently Microgame performs online management, on behalf of the operators it serves, for over 1.300.000 game accounts. In 2008 concessionaires served by Microgame generated more than 490 million Euros of gross gaming revenues, while the revenues of Microgame itself exceeded 85 million Euros.
The transaction, which follows more than 30 completed by MCP since 1999 (in the United States, Canada, Germany, France, Spain and Denmark), represents the fund's first investment in Italy. The fund specializes in management buyouts, recapitalizations and growth equity transactions for mid-sized companies. MCP favors investments in companies with strong, stable management teams that the fund can further support by leveraging its affiliation with Monitor Group, a leading strategic consultancy serving an international client base. To date MCP has invested over $1.5 billion.
Fabrizio D' Aloia noted, "We are very satisfied with the agreement we have signed with Monitor Clipper Partners which will allow us to further invest in our core provider business and offer a more complete and competitive a range of gaming services to our operator customers, who are our engine of success. We are currently the leading player in all of the regulated market segments including poker online, the nascent markets of skill games and casino games, and, of course, the more traditional fixed odds sports betting games. MCP's presence is a new asset for our company which will allow us to make better decisions around our future growth and further consolidate our position in the Italian market. Among our future objectives is to export our model abroad, taking advantage of the opportunities that will be created from the opening of new important European markets."
According to Peter Laino, Managing Partner of MCP responsible for the activities of the fund in Europe, "Microgame has an extremely competent management team with a very clear business vision, complementing the company's position as a leader in a high-growth sector with many significant future opportunities, not only in Italy. We share in the strategic vision followed by Microgame to date and this has been key element of our discussions. Our intention is to lend all of the support possible to continue to develop and evolve the company's strategy. Moreover, it is our intention to begin a new phase of institutional relations, characterized by a spirit of increased harmony and coherent with the strategies and rules enacted by the regulators."
Mario Mauri noted: "In a time of great difficulty for the financial markets and especially for private equity, this transaction shows that it is possible for investors to obtain double digit returns, while at the same time supporting the growth of individual businesses."
The agreement has been signed by all parties and the final closing is expected in the next weeks.
For further information:
AD HOC Communication Advisors
Giorgio Zambeletti – Ivan Barbieri 02/7606741