News of the takeover interest sent shares in the bookmaker soaring by almost a third to 289.8p.
Shares in FTSE 250-listed William Hill surged 39% to 303.10 pence each following the news, valuing the company at almost GBP3.2 billion.
"This offers huge potential following 2018's repeal of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) and the legalisation of sports wagering, albeit at the discretion of individual state legislatures", he said. Online casino revenue almost tripled for the period, to $778 million.
Here is William Hill's response to all the speculation...
William Hill has targeted the United States, which now generates about eight percent of its revenues, as a major growth market.
With William Hill completing the acquisition of CG Technology sportsbooks in Las Vegas, it now has a strong presence on the Las Vegas Strip.
The U.S. online casino and sports-betting market is expected to grow to $18 billion in revenue by 2025, with the top three players in market share projected to be Flutter Entertainment at 28%, DraftKings at 20% and Caesars at 12%, according to a Macquarie Research. Flutter Entertainment has the betting brands FoxBet and FanDuel.
Caesars already owns a 20% stake in William Hill's USA operations, which also have exclusive rights to operate sports betting under the Caesars brand. About 15 additional locations should be added in coming weeks, including the Horseshoe in Council Bluffs, Iowa, and the Harrah's in Atlantic City.