FTSE 250 movers: Ladbrokes and GVC rally on deal news; DS Smith drops
London’s FTSE 250 was flat at 19,824.17 in afternoon trade on Thursday, but M&A provided a welcome distraction from the drudgery of Brexit news.
Ladbrokes Coral surged on news is it in advanced talks with GVC Holdings about a possible £3.9bn takeover of the bookmaker. GVC was also sharply higher on the deal.
William Hill rallied after it settled a dispute with NYX, a Toronto-listed gaming software company in which the bookmaker owns a stake.
On the downside, shares in gambling software company Playtech fell on the back of the Ladbrokes Coral/GVC news, amid concerns about the implications of the deal on its contract with Ladbrokes, for whom it provides online platforms.
Commenting on the deal news, Shore Capital said in a note: “We would highlight Playtech. At this stage we are uncertain our the potential impact on one of its most important licensees although note its stake in Ladbrokes Coral is worth approaching 80p per share.”
Packaging and paper group DS Smith was in the red after saying sales increased strongly in the first half of the year but profits grew more slowly due to higher paper prices.
Investec and Paypoint were weaker as their stock went ex-dividend.
Ladbrokes Coral Group (LCL) 180.20p 32.79%
GVC Holdings (GVC) 990.00p 8.91%
William Hill (WMH) 310.30p 6.49%
Sophos Group (SOPH) 550.50p 4.76%
JD Sports Fashion (JD.) 331.95p 4.39%
Just Group (JUST) 163.10p 3.36%
Alfa Financial Software Holdings (ALFA) 495.00p 3.12%
esure Group (ESUR) 262.60p 2.58%
888 Holdings (888) 266.40p 2.46%
Spire Healthcare Group (SPI) 242.80p 2.45%
Aggreko (AGK) 791.50p -3.06%
Investec (INVP) 483.90p -2.75%
PayPoint (PAY) 890.50p -2.73%
Playtech (PTEC) 823.00p -2.72%
Smith (DS) (SMDS) 525.00p -2.60%
Britvic (BVIC) 799.00p -2.56%
Hochschild Mining (HOC) 219.00p -2.19%
Electra Private Equity (ELTA) 940.00p -2.19%
RDI Reit (RDI) 34.06p -2.15%
Rank Group (RNK) 240.10p -2.00%