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October 25, 2014

Bankrupt Greece ready to gamble its way out of trouble?


Greek Organisation of Football Prognostics S.A. (OPAP/ΟΠΑΠ) - logoGreece is preparing to gamble with its future by selling its massive shares on the Greek football gambling monopoly, as reported by the latest online casino news. At present, the Greek Government has a thirty four percent stake in the Hellenic Football Prognostics Organization (OPAP), the same organization that has complete control over sports betting in Greece until the year 2020. The National Privatization Agency is to commence selling such shares off in order to raise much needed funds for the government, including the possible sale of Greek National Lottery, some reports suggest.

Although denied by many in positions of power, leading industry and economic analysts firmly believe that the sale of the shares amounts to nothing more than a desperate measure by the Greek government to raise money in light of the current economic crisis and meltdown in the Mediterranean country.

The Hellenic Republic (Greece) have chosen two banks to be their financial advisors in any future transactions involving the shares of the OPAP; the Deutsche Bank of Germany and Greece’s National Bank of Greece are the two main banks attached to any possible negotiations involving the shares.

September the 19th is scheduled to be the start of the possible sale of the sports gambling shares in Greece, with a Hellenic Republic Assets Development Fund (HRADF) board meeting to take place on the day. It is believed that only twenty nine percent of the stakes will be put up for sale in the initial phases of the sales.

As for the rumors surrounding the Greek National Lottery; the sale of this could be completed by the end of the year according to reports. A complete sale will award the purchaser the rights to the European Lottery, Housing State Lottery, Instant Win Lottery, National Lottery, New Year’s Lottery and the Popular Lottery in the country. No sale will occur before the end of the year as OPAP has already declared their intention to see out the year in control of the lotteries.

The frontrunner in the candidacy to run the Hellenic lotteries comes from a syndicate made up of OPAP Investment Limited themselves, along with Lottomatica Giochi E Partecipazioni SRL, Intralot Lotteries Limited and Scientific Games Global Gaming, all Italian companies based in that country.

Credit Suisse and EFG Eurobank Equities have been put in charge of financial advice for the Greeks in the sale of the lotteries. Exactly who is the leading candidate to take over the sports betting rights on the Greek Football, is currently unknown.


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