British sportsbook William Hill has expanded its regulated presence with the recent acquisition of a majority stake in an online gambling company licensed in Colombia.
William Hill announced on Sunday that it bought a majority stake in Alfabet SAS, the parent organization of the online casino and online sports betting brand BetAlfa.
Alfabet has been providing its services in the Colombian regulated market since 2018 when it obtained a license from the local regulator, Coljuegos.
Acquiring a majority stake in the online gambling firm marks William Hill’s entry into the Colombian iGaming market and makes Colombia the ninth regulated market where the British online gambling giant is currently active.
Colombia was the first Latin American country to reorganize its online gambling market in a way that allows local and international online gambling companies to apply for Coljuegos licenses and operate in a regulated environment. The regulation of online games and sports betting in Colombia made the country and the region one of the most attractive destinations for operators from all corners of the world to seek to expand.
William Hill said its expansion into that market is in line with its strategy to continually expand and strengthen its regulated presence.
As part of that strategy, the company recently launched its Mr Green brand in Latvia. William Hill already operated the 11.lv brand in that regulated market.
A model market to follow
Commenting on their expansion into Colombia, William Hill CEO Ulrik Bengtsson said they are delighted to mark their first entry into a regulated market in Latin America. The executive went on to say that Colombia’s regulated iGaming market is “a role model” for the region’s online gambling space and that they are extremely excited about the opportunity to “Offer a very competitive product and a safe player experience.”
William Hill’s acquisition of a major licensed online gambling operator in Colombia is the latest in a series of significant developments for the company announced in recent months.
William Hill itself is set to be acquired by American online casino giant Caesars Entertainment Inc. in a deal of £ 2.9 billion. Caesars already owns a 20% stake in William Hill’s US operations through a joint venture it formed with the UK sportsbook in 2018.
The transaction was Strongly Endorsed by William Hill Shareholders at the end of November and now Caesars expects to close it in March 2021. Once this happens, the online casino operator will sell the UK bookmaker’s UK and international business and focus its attention on growing its operations sports betting in the US as more and more states embrace sports gambling and legalize the practice.