Century acquisition of WV casino approved
After originally announcing the acquisition in June this year, the West Virginia Lottery Commission has approved the sale of the Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack and Resort from Eldorado Resorts, Inc. to Century Casinos, Inc. (CNTY:NASDAQ CM).
Located on the Ohio River just north of New Cumberland, West Virginia, the thoroughbred racetrack and casino resort originally opened by then-owner Al Boyle, president of the Charles Town Races, on May 19, 1951, as “Waterford Park.”
Co-Chief Executive Officers for Century Casinos, Erwin Haitzmann and Peter Hoetzinger, commented on the acquisition in the company’s official press release…
“We are very excited to be expanding into West Virginia. Mountaineer is a great addition to our portfolio and will be our third racetrack and casino property. We look forward to working with the staff and community to continue the current success at Mountaineer into the future.”
The property, which is within driving distance of Pittsburgh, PA, Akron and Youngstown, OH, features a 357-room and suites hotel with seven dining and bar/lounge venues, more than 13,000 sq ft of total meeting space, full-service spa, fitness center, gift shop and regulation 18-hole golf course. The more than 78,000 square feet of gaming space includes over 1,100 slots, 32 table games, a 14-table poker room, racetrack, and a William Hill Sports Book, according to the website.
Headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colorado, Century Casinos entered into a definitive agreement with Reno, Nevada-based Eldorado Resorts in June 2019 to acquire the operations of three of its casinos, including Isle Casino Cape Girardeau, located in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, Lady Luck Caruthersville, located in Caruthersville, Missouri and Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack and Resort, for approximately $107.0 million.
Expected to close early in 2020, the transaction is subject to Missouri Gaming Commission approval in addition to other customary closing conditions, according to the press release.
At the same time as the closing, New York City-based real estate investment trust, VICI Properties Inc. (NYSE: VICI), will acquire the real estate assets of the trio of properties for approximately $278.0 million and Century will enter into a “triple net lease agreement” with the NY firm for the casino properties. “The lease will have an initial annual rent of approximately $25.0 million and an initial term of 15 years, with four five-year renewal options. The pro-forma rent coverage ratio at the acquired portfolio level is 2.1x,” according to the June press release.
In related news, in early June Century announced that it had expanded the gaming space at its casino located inside the Marriott Hotel in Warsaw, Poland. Operated by Casinos Poland Ltd., the company’s majority-owned subsidiary, the gambling venue celebrated the opening of an additional gaming floor at what is one of the firm’s seven casinos located in international four and five-star hotels in the country in Central Europe.
In addition to a controlling stake in Casinos Poland Ltd., Century Casinos, Inc. operates casinos in Bath, England, the U.S. and Canada and a number of casinos aboard luxury cruise lines (TUI Cruises and Diamond Cruise international) Additionally, the company manages a horse track and casino in Balzac, Alberta and in September 2016, was chosen to open a racetrack in the Edmonton area.