Penn National Gaming is confident of completing its acquisition of Pinnacle Entertainment in the second half of the year as it continues to seek regulatory approval for the deal.

The Mississippi Gaming Commission and Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission are the latest regulators to approve Penn's acquisition of Pinnacle, which was first agreed in December 2017.

Pinnacle operates the Ameristar Vicksburg Casino and Hotel in Mississippi and The Meadows, a racino in North Strabane Township, Pennsylvania.

As Pinnacle operates casinos in a number of different states, completion of the acquisition is contingent on regulatory approval in each state.

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board and West Virginia Lottery Commission approved the deal in March, while the Illinois Gaming Board approved the proposed financing for the USD$2.8bn deal earlier this month.

Each company's shareholders have also backed the deal, with 99 per cent of all votes cast supporting the transaction at an extraordinary general meetings held on March 29th.

Penn National Gaming chief executive Timothy Wilmott predicts that all relevant bodies will have given the deal the green light by the second half of the year, based on the current progress.

"We are grateful to the Mississippi Gaming Commission and the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission for their prompt review and approval of our proposed transaction," Wilmott said. "Ameristar Vicksburg and The Meadows will be great additions to our Mississippi and Pennsylvania operations, respectively, and we look forward to welcoming their employees and patrons to the Penn National family."

Shares in Penn National Gaming Inc (NSQ:PENN) closed up 1.05 per cent at USD$29.96 per share in New York Friday.

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