Indiana approves Caesars $1.7bn purchase of Centaur Gaming

By Harrison Sayers

The Indiana Gaming Commission has approved $4.5bn in casino acquisitions, including Caesars Entertainment Corp.'s $1.7bn purchase of the Indianapolis-based Centaur Gaming and its Hoosier Park and Indiana Grand horse racing casinos.

Indiana Grand and Hoosier Park are said to receive 6.5m visitors annually, with 1.1m members of their loyalty program. Those members will now be added to Caesar’s Total Rewards which includes over 40 resorts and casinos around the world.

"We are pleased that the Horse Racing Commission and the Gaming Commission have given us the approvals we need to allow for a smooth transfer of ownership of Indiana Grand and Hoosier Park,” said Caesars Entertainment's President and CEO Mark Frissora.

Centaur currently has over 35 portfolio companies across 11 countries, covering asset management, private equity, venture capital, trade finance, mining and natural resources. 

Penn National Gaming, the Pennsylvania-based operators and owners of gaming and racing facilities, also got the go-ahead for their $2.8bn deal to acquire Pinnacle Entertainment. 

 “We appreciate the diligent work of the Indiana Gaming Commission in their review and approval of our proposed transaction. We look forward to securing additional regulatory approvals in the near term and remain on schedule to complete the transaction in the second half of this year,” Timothy J. Wilmott, Chief Executive Officer of Penn National Gaming. said.

Indiana State law does not allow for a single company to own more than two casinos in Indiana, although the limit does not apply to racetracks.

As a result Penn National, which already owns the Hollywood Casino in the state, will sell on the Beltterra Casino Resort to Boyd Gaming as part of a $575m deal. The deal will also see Boyd purchase Ameristar casinos in St. Charles and Kansas City, Missouri, and the Belterra Park, Cincinnati.


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