Entain group director of M&A heads for the exit

Nicholas Batram confirms his departure from London-listed operator less than a month after CEO’s resignation  

Entain’s long-term M&A director, Nicholas Batram, has stepped down from the FTSE 100 operator.

The former Peel Hunt analyst originally joined Entain, then known as GVC Holdings, in April 2015 as director of investor relations and external communications.

In January 2019, Batram was named group director of M&A and corporate development.

During his near-five-year spell in the role, Batram played a key role actioning Entain’s M&A pipeline, which included moves for Dutch operator BetCity, pricing specialist Angstrom Sports and the £750m deal to acquire leading Polish bookmaker STS Gaming Group.

Batram is set to transition into freelance consultancy work following his exit, he confirmed on LinkedIn.

Speaking on his decision to leave, Batram said: “After nearly eight amazing years at Entain the time is right for me to undertake a new challenge and have a go at being my own boss.

“It’s been a privilege to have been part of the fantastic transformational journey the group has been on over this period. During this time, I have worked with four CEOs, four CFOs and countless talented individuals.

“It has also been an honour to have played a role in bringing in so many talented people into Entain through M&A. I have also had the opportunity to meet so many excellent people across the industry, business owners, operators and advisers,” he added.

Batram had also served as the chair of the Ladbrokes Coral Charitable Trust since June 2018.

Batram’s departure follows that of Entain CEO Jette Nygaard-Andersen who resigned with immediate effect on 13 December following investor criticism.

The Dane called time on her spell at the top of the business and has been replaced in the interim by board member Stella David.

Reports suggested investor pressure being heaped on Nygaard-Andersen was related to Entain’s recent business acquisitions.

During the summer, Eminence Capital slammed the group’s swoop for STS and suggested investor appetite was far more focused on the opportunity in the US, as opposed to European bolt-on plays.

 

​EGR Intel

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