October 9, 2011 / 11:57 AM / 8 years ago

Sportingbet nears Turkish sale to GVC - report

LONDON, Oct 9 (Reuters) - Online gaming firm Sportingbet is close to agreeing the sale of its Turkish gambling business to GVC, clearing an obstacle to Ladbrokes’ takeover of the company, according to the Sunday Times.

AIM-listed GVC revealed in August that it was in exclusive talks to buy Sportingbet’s Turkish-language website.

A disposal of the business would pave the way for Ladbrokes to buy Sportingbet to strengthen its online offering.

Ladbrokes has been in talks with Sportingbet since June, but the business in Turkey, where unlicensed websites are illegal, was seen by analysts as a stumbling block.

The high-street bookmaker, which has until Oct. 17 to table a bid for Sportingbet, has pulled out of previous deals because of its aversion to operating in unregulated territories.

A spokesman for Sportingbet said talks with both companies were ongoing. Ladbrokes declined to comment.

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