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DraftKings to go public, plans merger with Diamond Eagle, SBTech

Sports betting company DraftKings Inc. plans to go public and merge with two other companies.

DraftKings said it signed a definitive business combination agreement with special purpose acquisition company Diamond Eagle Acquisition Corp. and sports betting and gaming company SBTech Ltd.

DraftKings expects to close the transaction in the first half of 2020. The combined company will become a vertically integrated pure-play sports betting and online gaming company based in the U.S., according to a Dec. 23 news release.

Upon close of the transaction, Diamond Eagle will change its name to DraftKings Inc., reincorporate in Nevada and remain Nasdaq-listed under a new ticker symbol.

The new entity will be led by DraftKings co-founder and CEO Jason Robins. The SBTech management team will also be integrated into the organization.

DraftKings' institutional investors, including funds managed by Capital Research and Management Company, Wellington Management Company and Franklin Templeton, committed to a private investment of $304 million in class A common stock of the combined company. The investment will close concurrently with the merger.

Goldman Sachs is acting as exclusive financial adviser to Diamond Eagle. Raine Group is acting as exclusive financial adviser to DraftKings. Sullivan & Cromwell LLP is acting as legal adviser to DraftKings. Winston & Strawn LLP is acting as legal adviser to Diamond Eagle. Stifel is acting as financial adviser and Herzog Fox & Neeman and Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP are acting as legal advisers to SBTech. Goldman Sachs and Credit Suisse are acting as private placement agents to Diamond Eagle.