Bally’s enters 11th US state with Tropicana Evansville acquisition

7th June 2021 8:35 am GMT
Bally's Corp

New York-listed casino and sportsbook operator Bally's Corporation has completed its acquisition of Caesars Entertainment’s Tropicana Evansville casino in Indiana.

Following an initial agreement last October, the $140m acquisition expands Bally’s retail and online presence into an eleventh US state.

Bally's has also acquired the unencumbered rights to the Evansville operations' sports betting and iGaming skins, which will provide the company with greater access to the growing Indiana gaming market.

“The Tropicana Evansville acquisition closing marks another major accomplishment in what has already been a truly remarkable year for Bally's,” said Bally's Corporation president and CEO George Papanier.

“As we continue to implement our growth and diversification strategy with precision, we are excited to welcome the Tropicana Evansville into the Bally's family and look forward to the opportunity to provide our first-in-class land-based and interactive entertainment offerings to the Indiana gaming market.”

As part of the transaction, an affiliate of Gaming & Leisure Properties acquired the real estate associated with the Tropicana Evansville casino for $340m, which it is leasing to Bally's for $28m per year, subject to escalation.

GLPI also acquired the real estate associated with Bally's Dover Downs casino for $144m, which it is leasing back to Bally's for $12m per year. Both leases are governed by a master lease agreement with GLPI, which has an initial term of 15 years and includes four and five-year options.

"We are pleased to add these high-quality regional assets to our portfolio, expand our roster of operators, and gain geographic exposure to a new state," said GLPI chairman and CEO Peter Carlino. "Bally’s is one of the nation’s most dynamic regional gaming operators and we look forward to further supporting the execution of their growth plans. In particular, we look forward to adding their Mardi Gras and Golden casinos in Blackhawk, Colorado and their Jumer’s Casino and Hotel in Rock Island, Illinois to our existing master lease as we further expand our partnership."

Caesars Entertainment CEO Tom Reeg added: “I want to thank the Team Members of Evansville for all of their hard work and wish them continued success under Bally's leadership."

Shares in Bally’s Corporation (NSQ:BALY) closed lower by 2.31 per cent at $55.84 per share in New York Friday, while shares in Caesars Entertainment Inc (NSQ:CZR) were up 0.98 per cent at $110.64.

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