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Romanian betting and gaming operator Superbet has appointed Hans-Holger Albrecht, the former CEO of streaming service Deezer, as the chairman of the board in preparation for an upcoming initial public offering (IPO).

The news was first reported by Bloomberg.

Albrecht will replace Superbet founder Sacha Dragic on 28 February, who will become a board member.

“I am very pleased to welcome Hans-Holger as chairman. His appointment follows an extensive and thorough search process, through which we are convinced that we identified Hans-Holger as the standout candidate,” Dragic said in a statement.

“His in-depth financial knowledge and governance expertise will be of great benefit to the Group and our ambitions to become a publicly listed company,“ he added.

The timeline for Superbet’s IPO is currently unknown.

Superbet was founded in 2008.

In 2019, the company received a €175m investment from Blackstone and today operates in 10 European countries.

Commenting on his appointment, Albrecht said: “Superbet presents an exciting opportunity in terms of its growth trajectory and continued expansion plans.

“I have been impressed by the ambitions of the company, the responsible approach to its customers and the high level of innovation and entrepreneurship shown by the team.”

Experienced adviser

With a solid background as a CEO, chairman, and board member of both public and private companies across various regions, Albrecht brings a wealth of experience to the table.

Currently, he serves as the chair of the board at online real estate platform Scout24 Group and audiobook firm Storytel.

Previously, Albrecht was the CEO of Deezer, one of the world’s largest music streaming services, and served as the president and CEO of Millicom International, a multinational telecom and media group operating in over 16 countries.

Albrecht has also held the position of president and CEO at Modern Times Group MTG AB, where he successfully led the broadcasting operations expansion across Europe.

He is the brother of Ursula von der Leyen, the president of the European Commission.

Renewed interest in IPOs 

The European IPO market was mostly inactive in 2022 as many planned IPOs were postponed or cancelled due to rising interest rates and inflation.

However, there are now signs of renewed activity as some gambling companies are testing the market with new stock offerings.

Lottomatica, an Italian gaming company, is also considering an IPO on the Italian Stock Exchange.

The firm could raise roughly $1bn.

In January, sources close to the matter have revealed that the company is targeting a valuation of approximately $5bn, including debt, and is currently collaborating with UniCredit SpA and other banks to evaluate the IPO.

The listing could take place in Q2 of this year.

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