Sportingbet in £8.5m takeover

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The Independent Online

Sportingbet, the online gaming company, is buying two Danish sports-betting firms for up to £8.5m as it seeks to tap the less risky, regulated markets. The company's move to buy Danbook and Scandic Bookmakers comes two days after Britain's biggest betting firm, Ladbrokes, called off takeover talks with Sportingbet because of regulatory worries about the latter's Turkish business.

Sportingbet, which has customers across Europe, Australia, Canada, South America and South Africa, expects the latest deals to close in early 2012. Denmark has passed legislation that taxes online gambling at a lower rate than physical establishments, which comes into force on 1 January.