Indiana u-turn as Caesars retains Horseshoe Hammond

Caesars Entertainment is to retain the ownership of Indiana’s Horseshoe Hammond after the state’s regulator amended an order requiring the firm to offload a third casino asset in the state.

The Indiana Gaming Commission imposed the order as a condition of approving the July 2020 merger of Caesars and Eldorado Resorts in a $17.3bn cash and stock transaction.

A number of sales were made by the group’s in the weeks and months leading to completion, which was lauded as creating the US’ largest casino and entertainment firm.

However, the Indiana regulator has now reversed its prior decision, which will see Caesars continue to own and operate Horseshoe Hammond, Indiana Grand, Harrah’s Hoosier Park, and its three off-track betting locations.

“We are confident that our continued operating of Horseshoe Hammond is in the best interest of our team members, guests, the Hammond community, and the state of Indiana,” stated Tom Reeg, CEO of Caesars Entertainment. 

“We believe that maintaining our strong customer and employee relationships at Horseshoe Hammond makes the property best positioned for a strong and exciting future.”

As part of the divestment strategy, Caesars recently closed the sale of Tropicana Evansville to Gaming & Leisure Properties and Bally’s Corporation for $480m, with the latter also gaining rights to the properties sports betting and igaming skins.

Bally’s acquired the Tropicana Evansville for $140m, with the transaction seeing GLPI gain the real estate associated with the venue for $340m, which it is leasing to Bally’s for $28 million per year, subject to escalation.

Furthermore, the group also expects to close the sale of Caesars Southern Indiana sometime in the third quarter of 2021, with Caesars, alongside real estate investment trust Vici Properties, announcing a definitive agreement to sell the operations of the venue to the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians for $250m, in December 2020.

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