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Chairman Ronald Perelman looking to sell entire 39% stake in Scientific Games

Scientific Games Chairman Ronald Perelman has revealed he is exploring opportunities to sell his entire 39% stake in the global gaming giant.

The potential sale was outlined via a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission by MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings Ltd – Perelman’s wholly-owned investment vehicle whose interests also include cosmetics firm Revlon, military vehicle manufacturer AM General and biopharmaceutical company vTv Therapeutics.

According to the filing, MacAndrews & Forbes “have determined to explore a possible sale of the Common Stock that the Reporting Persons currently hold.”

However, the company has “not formulated any specific or definitive plan or proposal relating to the matters described in this paragraph, and there can be no assurance that any transaction will occur or as to the terms of any such transaction.”

While no extra detail of the proposed sale was provided in the filing, MacAndrews & Forbes issued a statement via Bloomberg in which spokesman Josh Vlasto suggested Perelman was looking to rework his investment portfolio amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“Due to changes in the world both socially and economically, we have decided to reset MacAndrews & Forbes in a manner that will give us maximum flexibility both financially and personally,” said Vlasto.

“This will allow us to be opportunistic and flexible in looking at new situations.”

US-based gaming industry media firm CDC Gaming Reports also cited a research note from SunTrust Robinson suggesting Perelman may not be in any rush to sell his Scientific Games interest.

“In our view, MacAndrews appears to not be a forced seller on a tight timeline here and would likely look to maximize proceeds should they exit,” SunTrust Robinson analyst Barry Jonas said.

Like many in the global gaming industry, Scientific Games has suffered significantly due to the COVID-19 pandemic, announcing in March an undisclosed number of staff furloughs as well as workforce hour and pay reductions. CEO Barry Cottle has also waived his entire wage with 50% reductions for the rest of the executive leadership team.

Cottle revealed during the company’s 1Q20 earnings call that he expected cash outflow of almost US$1 million per day during the second quarter.

Perelman, 77, is currently listed as the 79th wealthiest person in the United States with a personal fortune of US$7.8 billion.

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