London billionaire siblings Richard and Ian Livingstone recently came out as some of the biggest financial winners despite the Covid-19 crisis, as their shares in a small gambling firm doubled to £1.4 billion.
The two brothers, whose properties include multiple high-end shops, various luxurious hotels, and resorts and are responsible for the Panama Pacifico, among other high-profile projects, are the biggest shareholders in Swedish internet casino business Evolution Gaming. The duo’s shares are held by Richard while Ian sits on the Evolution’s board as a director.
Ever since the recent Covid-19 outbreak and the subsequent lockdown that followed, of which has affected thousands of people around the globe, people turned to many different ways to entertain themselves. Because of this, millions have taken a liking to the online betting and gaming industry. These popular online games include poker, blackjack, slots, and roulette. This recent increase in online traffic has triggered a surge in Evolution Gaming’s Share Price.
Evolution Gaming’s share price nearly doubled as it skyrocketed upwards during the recent months. Last January, its share price was 282 Swedish kroner (£37) and now has risen to about 552 kroner (£70) with highs of 577 kroner (£77), an increase of almost 97% in average. This brought up Richard’s share paper profits to a staggering £671 million despite only owning 17% (30 million shares) of the company. To put this into perspective, upon the company’s debut, its shares were priced at just 80 kroner (£10) in 2015.
The brothers’ investment expertise in property has already made them famous worldwide as their skill and business intuition has propelled them into London’s wealthiest billionaires list. Despite their property investment prowess, their investment in Evolution Gaming will surely be a surprise for most business scene followers. This investment will allow them to greatly offset the recent downward trend in property asset values of the many hotels and resorts around the world.
This investment is particularly clever because it is set to position them in the online gaming scene as an indispensable back-end for the world’s most popular online casino platforms. This also means that they are able to benefit from the surge of online gaming across various companies around the world without the need to spend a great deal of money on marketing and advertising as their brand is already well-known.
The company is currently serving many online gambling giants in the UK such as Paddy Power, Betfair, and William Hill. These companies are using Evolution’s games as the backend while rebranding them as their own. The company has also made a lot of progress into the live casino gaming scene, this is where a live-stream of dealer tables and game shows is broadcasted and players can play along and bet on real-life games through the use of their mobile phones or personal computers. They have recently built this platform and they already have eight studios spread across Europe, Canada, and the United States.