Playtech deal shows it’s full steam ahead for Northstar Gaming owners

February 13, 2023 11:06 AM
  • Mark Keast, CDC Gaming Reports
February 13, 2023 11:06 AM
  • Mark Keast, CDC Gaming Reports

It’s full steam ahead for NorthStar Gaming Inc., after the resolution of a dispute between the owners of its parent company.

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This morning, Northstar (NSG) announced a $12.25 million strategic investment deal with Playtech, a gambling- industry tech company, part of an application process that will see NSG trading on the TSX Venture Exchange. The investment completes concurrent fundraising (in aggregate gross proceeds of $22.33 million) in connection with an NSG reverse takeover as part of the TSX process.

Playtech will act as a strategic investor and advisor to NSG, most notably for its online operations, managed services, and market expansion. The announcement is an expansion of their partnership, a new 10-year agreement.

Playtech has offices in 20 countries around the globe and currently provides NorthStar with a suite of technology solutions, including Playtech’s IMS Platform, casino and live casino software that powers the NorthStar Bets platform.

“Playtech’s unparalleled expertise in the gaming industry will help NorthStar accelerate our growth and rapidly expand our user base,” said Michael Moskowitz, Chief Executive Officer and a founding partner of NorthStar Gaming in a statement. “The additional investment will expand our market share across Ontario and further enhance our content-driven experience for consumers.”

There’s been some uncertainty about the future of the company, in terms of leadership. An arbitration deal announced last week involving NordStar Capital LP gave Toronto Star publisher Jordan Bitove full control of the newspaper’s parent company, Torstar Corporation, one of NordStar’s companies.

Bitove also maintains a voting-rights interest in NSG and VerticalScope Holding Inc., companies also under the NordStar umbrella.

“With the investor-rights interests in VerticalScope and NorthStar, we have a fantastic opportunity to continue building these organizations, while fully supporting their management teams to meet the moment and fully leverage their cutting-edge technology,” Bitove said.

NordStar’s co-owner Paul Rivett had filed an application with the Ontario Superior Court seeking a court order to dissolve NordStar Capital Inc., which had purchased Torstar in 2020 for $60 million. The dispute revolved around disagreements regarding budgeting and corporate governance at Torstar.

NorthStar Gaming owns and operates NorthStar Bets, a made-in-Ontario casino and sportsbook gaming platform. The sportsbook provides real-time news, stats, analysis, and scores directly in the betting environment, along with online casino games.

The Playtech investment and expanded partnership between the two companies will support NorthStar’s growth in the hyper-competitive regulated Ontario market, currently 40 licensed companies, including investment in new technological innovations for NorthStar Bets gaming platforms while expanding marketing efforts.

Playtech’s CFO, Chris McGinnis, will join the board of directors of NorthStar as a non-executive director. Playtech is a tech leader in the gambling industry with over 7,000 employees in 20 countries, delivering gambling software, services, content and platform technology across the industry’s most popular product verticals, including, casino, live casino, sports betting, virtual sports, bingo and poker.