CORRECTED-UPDATE 3-Gambling firm GVC raises offer to $1.6 bln for rival (July 27)

Fri Aug 7, 2015 7:26am EDT
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(Corrects paragraph 4 of July 27 story to say that the company has cut costs, not struggled with cost savings)

* GVC makes 122.5p/share offer for Bwin

* Says Cerberus Capital to provide 400 mln-euro loan

* Cost savings to exceed 135 mln euros per annum

By Aastha Agnihotri and Neil Maidment

LONDON, July 27 (Reuters) - Online gambling firm GVC Holdings returned on Monday with a new 1 billion-pound ($1.55 billion) bid for rival Digital Entertainment , looking to trump a recently accepted offer from 888 .

Bwin, put up for sale last year, accepted a cash and stock deal worth almost 900 million pounds from online casino and poker firm 888 this month, shunning an earlier 908-million-pound offer from GVC and Canada's Amaya Inc, which it deemed too complex and with less attractive growth prospects.

The tussle for Bwin is the latest in a flurry of merger activity in the industry, a trend likely to continue as firms seek to expand to offset increasing taxes and tighter regulation in Britain. Last week Ladbrokes and Gala Coral agreed a $3.4 billion all-share merger.

Bwin, which has struggled with the decline of regulated poker markets in Europe and has cut costs since its creation via a merger of sports betting group Bwin and online poker group PartyGaming in 2011, confirmed on Monday that it had received a new offer from GVC and would respond in due course.   Continued...