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Entain Appoints Ricky Sandler as Non-Executive Director

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Entain, a leading player in the gaming and betting industry, has officially welcomed Ricky Sandler to its board. Sandler, the founder and CEO of Eminence Capital, has been appointed a non-executive director taking effect immediately.

Sandler is also set to join Entain’s People & Governance and Capital Allocation committees. One of his key tasks involves aiding in the search for another non-executive director, a decision that will be made in collaboration between Eminence and Entain.

A Wealth of Professional Experience

Sandler’s led Eminence Capital, a firm he established in 1999 in New York, as its CEO for more than 25 years. He is also the company’s chief investment officer and this coupled with his previous experiences, ensures he brings a wealth of knowledge to Entain. Before Eminence, Sandler co-founded Fusion Capital Management and also served as a research analyst at Mark Asset Management Corporation.

On his appointment, Sandler expressed enthusiasm about joining Entain.

Entain is a robust business with market-leading brands, a unique technology platform and enviable positions in key geographies around the world. I look forward to working with my fellow directors to help Entain achieve long-term success and create lasting value for its shareholders.

Ricky SandlerCEO of Eminence Capital

Barry Gibson, Entain’s chairman, echoed this sentiment. He emphasized Sandler’s deep understanding of the business and his alignment with Entain’s growth potential stating, “We look forward to benefiting from his perspectives and expertise as we work to drive value for all Entain shareholders.”

An Interesting Appointment

Few are surprised by the appointment of Sandler and it was predicted last month by the Sunday Times. However, it is an interesting choice given the opinions he has expressed about the company in the past.

He has been vocal about Entain divesting its share in BetMGM, the joint venture with MGM Resorts. Additionally, his open letter in June 2023 scrutinized Entain’s acquisition of STS in Poland. He questioned the logic behind funding the acquisition through equity issuance, labeling it as a strategy that undermines shareholder value.

Sandler’s concern extended to Entain’s share price, which saw a significant drop following the STS deal announcement. His criticism of the board’s decisions reflects a commitment to ensuring shareholder value and strategic decision-making.

We can assure you that this particular shareholder is outraged and in light of the movement in the company’s share price we are clearly not alone in that sentiment. As shareholders lose confidence in Entain’s ability to allocate capital and create long term value, it is quite likely they will support a sale of the company to MGM at a materially lower price than previously assumed. Eminence will continue to make its voice heard in an effort to ensure Entain’s board and management do not make any further value destructive decisions.

Ricky SandlerCEO of Eminence Capital

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