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Freshfields advises Ontario Teachers’ on sale of Premier Lotteries Ireland

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (‘Freshfields’) is advising Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan Board (“Ontario Teachers’”) on its agreement to sell its majority shareholding in Premier Lotteries Ireland DAC (“PLI”), the operator of the Irish National Lottery, to La Française de Jeux (“FDJ”), the largest French lottery gaming operator.

As part of the transaction, PLI’s other shareholders, An Post and the An Post Pension Fund, will also sell their minority shareholdings in PLI to FDJ.

PLI was awarded a 20-year licence by the Irish Government in November 2014, and under Ontario Teachers’ and An Post’s ownership has raised of €1.9 billion for Good Causes, with 2021 and 2022 being the most successful years in that regard. PLI’s core purpose is to operate a responsible world-class lottery for the people of Ireland, raising much needed Good Causes funding for the benefit of local communities throughout the country. FDJ and PLI have a long-standing partnership successfully operating the transnational EuroMillions lottery.

The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including approval by the Irish Regulator of the National Lottery.

The Freshfields team is being led by partners Richard Johnson and Patrick Ko and senior associate Christopher Yarrow, together with partner Helen Buchanan and senior associate Emily Szasz advising on tax matters, and partners Alex Potter and Deirdre Trapp advising on antitrust and foreign investment matters.