BUSINESS

Baazov backer vows to boost commitment to ensure Amaya bid success

TAGs: Amaya Gaming, David Baazov

amaya-goldenway-baazov-bidFormer Amaya Gaming CEO David Baazov has confirmed that a Dubai-based investment firm is not involved in his bid to acquire Amaya.

On Tuesday, KBC Aldini Capital Ltd publicly refuted Baazov’s claims that it was one of four financial entities backstopping Baazov’s C$24 per share bid to acquire Amaya, the parent company of PokerStars. Baazov (pictured) announced the bid on November 14 in a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

KBC CEO Kalani Lal told Toronto’s Globe & Mail newspaper that his firm had never “given any commitment, nor have we had any discussions, or any type of verbal communication” about Amaya with anyone. Lal said his firm had submitted a complaint to the SEC regarding Baazov “using KBC’s name fraudulently.”

On Wednesday, Baazov released a statement saying KBC had advised him that “the equity commitment letter purported to be delivered to Mr. Baazov on behalf of KBC was delivered without KBC’s knowledge or consent and that KBC has not committed to provide financing for the proposed acquisition of Amaya.”

Baazov went on to say that he intends to “obtain replacement financing” and that the financial terms in his November 14 offer to acquire Amaya still stand.

While Baazov may be undeterred by this slip-up, questions abound as to how he and his legal team were so dramatically punked by parties unknown, and why these parties would have gone to the trouble of engaging in subterfuge that would be so easily exposed as fraudulent. (Given that Baazov is currently under investigation for insider trading regarding Amaya transactions, check all recently placed short positions on Amaya, stat!)

GOLDENWAY DOUBLES DOWN, HEAD & SHOULDERS UNCERTAIN
Some of Baazov’s replacement financing could come from one of the three other investment firms cited in Baazov’s November 14 SEC filing. On Wednesday, Ricky Lai, director of Hong Kong-based Goldenway Capital, confirmed to CalvinAyre.com that the company is still working with Baazov on the proposed Amaya transaction.

Lai went on to say that Goldenway, part of the Goldenway Group, is “in full support of David Baazov and are prepared to increase our commitment if so required in order to conclude a successful transaction.” But while Goldenway appears willing to double down on Baazov, at least one of his other backers appears to be waffling.

The other equity investors listed in Baazov’s SEC filing were Hong Kong-based Head and Shoulders Global Investment Fund and the mysterious Ferdyne Advisory Inc. On Wednesday, Head and Shoulders chairman Stanley Choi told Bloomberg Markets that while his company was indeed working with Baazov, “there is a lot of uncertainty right now” regarding the bid’s chances of success.

As for Ferdyne, they remain shrouded in mystery. There was a Ferdyne registered with the British Virgin Islands Official Gazette but the company was stricken from the registry in 2013 for “non-payment of fees.”

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