The Straits Times
Published on Nov 10, 2012

Greece gets Chinese, private equity interest for betting firm sale


ATHENS (REUTERS) - Eight potential investors, including a Chinese conglomerate and private equity funds, have expressed interest in buying a major stake in Greek gambling monopoly Opap, the country's privatisation agency HRADF said on Saturday.

Among the firms responding to a Nov 9 deadline to express interest was a unit of Fosun International, one of China's largest business groups whose main shareholder is billionaire Guo Guangchang.

Athens is selling 33 per cent, almost its entire stake, in Opap, one of Europe's biggest-listed gambling firms with a total market capitalisation of 1.5 billion euros (S$2.35 billion) on the Athens Stock Exchange.

Other potential bidders include private equity firms BC Partners and TPG Capital. Estonia-based Playtech, the world's biggest provider of online gaming software, teamed up with German gaming equipment maker Gauselmann to consider a bid.