UK betting giant William Hill has rejected a takeover bid by rival betting groups the Rank Group and 888 Holdings, saying that the £3.16 billion offer is "substantially undervalued".
The bid was rejected, but 888 and Rank are maintaining their intent to purchase the retail and online betting firm, saying that their offer is fair and provides shareholders a unique opportunity. If the groups were to merge, the comany would be the largest multi-faceted UK gaming company in terms of revenues, and the third largest online entity in the UK.
Speaking about his company's rejection of the deal, William Hill Chairman Gareth Davis said, "In addition, as we have said before, this proposal is highly opportunistic, complex and poses significant risk for our shareholders."
UK betting firms have been quick to merge in the wake of the country's point of consumption tax, which has been put into place, as Paddy Power and Betfair, as well as Bwin and GVC Holdings joined forces in multi-billion pound mergers.