Online bingo parent to Gala Bingo, Gala Coral has made the broadsheet and tabloid news again last weekend. The same old chestnut seems to be rearing its head that the bingo and bookmaking firm are looking to restructure their debt, swapping the £540m they have in loans for equity. Gala Bingo seem almost permanently in the news at the moment, if it isn’t a story about the gaming company shutting yet another bingo hall down then it is the almost continually regurgitated news regarding the financial difficulties due to the £2.6m of debt that the firm is reportedly suffering.
The press and in particular the Times online site have reported that they are anticipating that the private equity firms that own Gala Bingo ’s parent company will most likely agree to swapping at least half of their interest in the group of companies, which includes high street bingo halls and bookmakers as well as online bingo site Gala Bingo. Negotiations that are still reportedly ongoing will be finalised by the end of October, if the reports are to be believed then it is expected that the debt will be taken on by Park Square and Intermediate Capital. Gala Coral are experiencing difficulties due to their inability to release much needed cash to develop their company further, this new deal if it is given the green light will assist with their future plans for growth.
Readers will remember our in depth interview with the Chairman of Gala Bingo and Gala Coral Neil Goulden. Mr Goulden at the time of the interview expressed his frustration at not being able to use any of the £250m in cash showing in the Gala accounts to help with plans for growth. Mr Goulden was also extremely frustrated by the negative press coverage about the financial difficulties that Gala Coral were experiencing saying at the time, that Gala was ‘a great company with a bad balance sheet’. It is hoped that the new deal will allow the company to move forward with their plans to grow the company still further.