Bally Wulff, the German AWP manufacturer has been sold to Austria’s Apex Gaming, according to strong rumours emanating from the German market overnight.

No confirmation has been issued by either company, but the speculation suggests that in fact Apex is only the “front” for Novomatic – again, unconfirmed.

Last week this column reported on the speculation in Germany over the fate of the country’s number three manufacturer and quoted an alleged acquisition price of €10m. At that time it was understood to be a joint approach by Apex and Novomatic.

Lowen Entertainment, the Novomatic subsidiary in Germany and one of the “big two” manufacturers with Gauselmann Group, is also making no announcement.

Apex’s CEO Johannes Weissengruber (picture) is also rumoured to be selling off 60 to 70 per cent of Apex to Novomatic. It all comes amid a flurry of rumour and speculation in the German market about a potential major shift in the limited payouts slots business, currently with over 200,000 units out in German arcades and bars.

The appeal for Novomatic could be access to the Bally Wulff Games and Entertainment intellectual assets, while for Apex, for some years attempting to penetrate the German market, access to the chain of local sales depots across Germany held by Bally Wulff would be an attraction.

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