NetPlay TV Announces £12.8 Million Private Placement

--Also Announces Strategic Partnership with Playtech

NetPlay TV, a UK-based company that specializes in "live" interactive TV gambling (note: the company recently acquired Two Way Gaming, a joint venture between Two Way TV and Win Gaming, and, as part of that deal, has taken over the production of interactive TV gaming channel, Challenge Jackpot, which offers programming on the UK's Virgin Media cable, Sky satellite and Freeview digital terrestrial platforms--see article posted on, May 19th), announced last week that it has conditionally placed 58,352,476 new ordinary shares of £0.05 each, at a price of £0.22 per share, raising gross proceeds of £12,837,545. It says that the new funding will strengthen its balance sheet and provide capital for future growth. The new shares, which will be placed with investment company, Directforce Trading, will represent approximately 29.9% of NetPlay TV's enlarged share capital, the company says (note: NetPlay TV says that "the beneficiary of Directforce also has a beneficial interest in a significant shareholder of Playtech"). While the placing is subject to shareholder approval at a general meeting, NetPlay TV says that it has received "irrevocable commitments" from shareholders representing 43.4% of its current issued share capital to vote in favor of the resolutions to be proposed at the general meeting.

NetPlay TV also announced last week that it has signed an MOU with Playtech--a company which claims to be the world's largest publicly traded online gaming software supplier--that calls for it to provide "live" interactive games to the latter over a five-year period. Games that NetPlay TV will deliver to Playtech under the deal include "Live Roulette," "Live Blackjack," "Live Bingo," and a live fixed-odds draw. The agreement additionally calls for NetPlay TV to migrate all its services onto the Playtech technology platform: that part of the agreement also has a five-year term, the company says. "We have been looking for a partner in the 'live' interactive gaming market for some time," Playtech CEO, Mor Weizer, said in a prepared statement. "Our clients and their customers are demanding 'live' products and therefore it is logical we offer them the best services available. This agreement enables us to offer our licensees unique TV-quality gaming shows; this will also enrich their offering to gamers, and will boost Playtech's bingo offering, increasing Playtech’s bingo network liquidity significantly. We believe 'live' gaming is going to be very big in the coming years and, as such, a significant investment in this business makes perfect sense." Added Netplay TV CEO, Martin Higginson: "This agreement will take NetPlay TV to new heights. The investment of £12.8 million into our business, along with the strategic relationship, both in terms of distribution and technology with Playtech, will enable us to drive the development of our converged gaming solutions."