Move by Mangas Capital Entertainment to acquire Nordicbet

A move by French group Mangas Capital Entertainment to acquire the online poker, casino, livebetting, sports and skill gaming company has been attracting attention throughout the French media this week with reports that exclusive negotiations are in progress with a view to sealing a deal before the end of 2008.

A successful signing will add Nordicbet to Mangas's 75 percent interest in the sportsbetting site Betclick acquired earlier this year (see previous InfoPowa report). Several publications reported that Mangas is also interested in another and at this time unidentified European online sportsbetting company.

The Isle of Man licensed and Scandinavian focused Nordicbet is owned by the Betpoint group through Norinvest, and has been successful in its diverse offering to players in the UK, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Denmark.

Paris Sportifs reports that Mangas Capital Entertainment was founded late 2007 by CEO Stéphane Courbit, an extensively experienced executive in developing TV programme formats and producing content. Courbit is the former CEO of Endemol France and launched Endemol's Big Brother TV programme format in the French market.

In May 2008 IFIL SpA announced that it was investing Euros 42.5 million in the Paris-based Mangas with the aim to launch MCE as a new player in the European television production sector.

"The investment is in the framework of a capital increase aimed at providing MCE resources for a total amount of Euro 250 million," a statement from the company revealed. IFIL was to inject an initial Euro 21.25 million to secure a 17 percent stake in MCE, it said.

Courbit holds a 48 percent stake in MCE, with allies holding sufficient shares to ensure a majority in the company.

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