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Australia's Tabcorp confirms proposals for potential sale of wagering arm; shares jump

Feb 2 (Reuters) - Tabcorp Holdings Ltd said on Tuesday it had received multiple proposals for a potential sale of its wagering and media business, sending shares of the betting firm close to a one-year high.

The company’s shares jumped as much as 11.7% to A$4.58, hitting their highest since February last year.

Tabcorp’s wagering arm has come under pressure from intensifying competition as the industry faces a shift to online betting from traditional retail betting.

The company has also been hit by coronavirus-induced closures of betting shops and cancellation of sporting events, forcing it to take measures to shore up its balance sheet, including the sale of a 11.6% stake in smaller peer Jumbo Interactive Ltd.

The proposals were confidential, indicative, non-binding and there is no certainty any transaction will occur, Tabcorp said. It did not name the interested parties.

The Melbourne-based company added its board was assessing the proposals and will provide an update in due course.

Local media had first reported on the proposals and a plan involving the demerger of the wagering arm. (bit.ly/2MrcEKz)

Tabcorp said in November it had not received any proposals yet for the company or the wagering arm. (Reporting by Shruti Sonal in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)

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