Ainsworth/Novomatic Vote Slated for June 27

Shareholders of Ainsworth Game Technology will vote Jun 27 on the proposed takeover of its founder’s majority share by Novomatic AG.

Shareholders of Australian slot manufacturer Ainsworth Game Technology will vote June 27 on the proposed acquisition of the majority stake of founder Len Ainsworth by Austrian gaming giant Novomatic AG.

The vote had been delayed as Australia’s Takeover Panel, an independent per-review body created by the country’s federal government, considered the question of whether or not Ainsworth’s wife, Margarete (Gretel) Ainsworth, should be banned from the vote. Margarete Ainsworth’s 8.9 percent stake makes her the company’s second-largest shareholder behind the founder, and government officials had been concerned that her and her husband voting as a block would be unfair to other shareholders.

Last week, the company announced in a filing that Margarete Ainsworth will not vote on the proposed takeover.

Len Ainsworth, the 92-year-old gaming legend who founded Aristocrat Leisure Ltd. in 1954, handed over much of his stake in that slot-maker to his family during the 1990s, and founded Ainsworth Game Technology in 1996 and built it into a worldwide competitor to his former company. AGT recently completed a new Las Vegas headquarters facility as it embarks on a new effort to penetrate the U.S. casino market.

In February, the pending sale of Ainsworth’s 53 percent stake in the company was announced. Ainsworth, who will retain the title of executive chairman, has said he will donate “a large chunk” of the $473 million windfall he stands to gain from the sale to charity.