New database breaks down the $125 billion spent on IGaming acquisitions

In a world where strategic mergers and acquisitions are redefining the iGaming industry, online entertainment is changing. We can track this now full record of iGaming acquisitions thanks to the results of an extensive research project published on Bojoko.com.

The database shows how the iGaming industry has changed significantly since the first deal in 2001, moving from multi-million dollar acquisitions to multi-billion dollar mergers.

iGaming companies traded for more than $125 billion, while 2022 and 2023 set new single revenue records at 53 and 77, respectively.

In this article, we will examine key offerings and trends to provide a picture of where the iGaming industry has been and where it is today.

Exploring acquisitions

The report carefully details the key acquisitions and mergers in the iGaming sector, each highlighting strategic moves and reshaping the industry. From large companies acquiring startups to forming groundbreaking partnerships, the stories are diverse and compelling. Below are some highlights from the 24 years we’ve seen iGaming acquisitions and mergers to date.

The first offers

The journey of iGaming acquisitions began in 2001 when Sportingbet acquired Sportbook.com for $51 million. However, notable acquisitions remained rare until 2003.

Back then, companies were more focused on acquiring technology and platforms for online poker, casino gaming and sports betting. Despite landmark deals like Lottomatica’s acquisition of GTECH for over $4 billion in the early 2000s, the number of annual deals remained low.

Expansion and dominance

As the iGaming sector grew, we began to see the shapes of a select few giants eager to win over the competition. In the late 2000s we saw the rise of Betsson, Kindred Group, 888 and GVC Holdings (now Entain), which bought operator after operator to consolidate their dominance.

Similar trends were seen in the affiliate world, where GIG, Catena Media and later Better Collective took control. This shared dominance continued into the 2020s, when GIG purchased several key products from Catena Media, including their flagship AskGamblers.

The biggest catalyst on the game development front was Scientific Games, now called Light & Wonder. They made some of the biggest deals of all time, including the acquisition of Bally Technologies for over $5 billion in 2014 and WMS for $1.5 billion in 2013. Another massive consolidation of power in the sector occurred when Evolution Gaming acquired NetEnt in 2020 for $2.1 billion.

The biggest merger

The largest iGaming merger took place between Paddy Power and Betfair in 2015 and marked a significant event in the online betting space. From this union emerged Paddy Power Betfair, a powerhouse of over 7,000 employees that combines the strengths of Ireland and the UK for online betting supremacy. With a sale price of £5 billion ($7 billion), the merger cemented its position as a major player in the industry.

The largest acquisition

Brookfield Business Partners’ acquisition of Scientific Games Lottery is the largest non-merger deal. Brookfield recognized the potential of scientific games, setting the stage for growth and innovation and highlighting the opportunities in the iGaming industry in the 2020s. With a sales price of $5.8 billion, this acquisition highlights Brookfield’s strategic investment and the significant value placed on Scientific Games Lottery in the market. Note that this was not a purchase of Scientific Games, which continues to maintain market dominance as Light & Wonder.

Notable increase in acquisitions in the 2020s

The iGaming industry has seen significant growth in mergers and acquisitions, reflecting its dynamic nature. From 2020 to 2023, the industry experienced a notable increase in deals.

There were 18 deals in 2020. The following year, 2021, saw a significant increase with 53 transactions – an increase of 194.44%. Then, in 2022, the industry peaked with 57 sales totaling $19,109.4 million. However, 2023, while still strong with 77 sales, saw a smaller increase in total sales at $7,223 million.

In total, there were approximately 211 acquisitions or mergers in the 2020s with a total value of $49.3 billion. This growth is driven by increasing demand for online entertainment and digital gaming platforms.

What does the future look like for iGaming?

The pace of iGaming mergers and acquisitions shows no signs of slowing. Instead, the 2020s could see even larger deals as companies struggle to adapt and expand into new markets. We have already seen new sales records in 2022 and 2023, and there is nothing to suggest that 2024 will not follow this trend.

Only time will tell who the biggest movers and shakers of the 2020s will be, but we’re already seeing a few names dominate the stats. Entain has made ten acquisitions in the last three years, including six in 2023. We can also see that 888, GIG, Better Collective and other well-known names have made multiple acquisitions during the same period.

The 2020s are likely to be a pivotal time for the industry, and the continuously updated overview of iGaming mergers and acquisitions that Bojoko.com has provided will provide significant clarity on where the market is heading.


Interesting article on the topic: “Will the iGaming industry really reach $155 billion by 2030?”

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