Sun International gets approval for Dreams merger

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Sun International CE Graeme Stephens said the deal is a milestone in the history of Sun International. It gives the company great opportunities to achieve scale and reach outside Africa. Sun International CE Graeme Stephens said the deal is a milestone in the history of Sun International. It gives the company great opportunities to achieve scale and reach outside Africa.

Sun International receives approval from the relevant gambling regulators in Latin America for the merger of its Latin American portfolio with Chile-based Dreams.

The merger had been implemented and would result in the formation of the largest gaming company in Latin America‚ Sun International said on Wednesday.

“This deal is a milestone in the history of Sun International. It gives the company great opportunities to achieve scale and reach outside Africa and diversify its earnings and risk‚” Sun International CE Graeme Stephens said in a statement.

The deal involves Sun International’s Monticello Grand Casino in Chile‚ the Ocean Club Casino in Panama and the Sun Nao Casino in Colombia.

The Dreams portfolio has six casinos in Chile — Iquique‚ Temuco‚ Valdivia‚ Puerto Varas‚ Coyhaique‚ Punta Arenas — and four in Peru‚ which are all in Lima. Together‚ the new company will have 13 casinos‚ with a total of about 7‚000 slot machines and 300 tables.

“Dreams provides a strong presence in Chile‚ an expansion strategy that has seen growth in Peru‚ which is complementary to Sun International’s expansion into Panama and Colombia‚ and‚ importantly‚ an executive management team that comes from Latin America and has significant operational experience in the region‚” Stephens said.

“Latin America holds tremendous potential and plans are well advanced to expand further in the region. We are already investigating exciting opportunities in Brazil‚ which is now opening to gambling‚ and have plans for expansion in Peru. Despite the current economic downturn‚ the gaming industry in Chile is still achieving good growth and there will be further opportunities in the next year or so to bid for additional licences in Chile.”

The debt in the Latin American business had been restructured and the business had sufficient capacity to fund its expansion plans‚ Sun International said.

It raised the debt from a combination of Chilean banks — BCI‚ BBVA‚ Santander and Itau-Corpbanca.

“This is a huge vote of confidence in our ability to consolidate‚ grow and expand further into the region‚” the company said.

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Hotels and Leisure  |  Sun International  |  Graeme Stephens
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