The Nevada Gaming Commission on Thursday unanimously approved the licensing of Bally’s Corp. and its Montbleu property at Lake Tahoe.
Commissioners unanimously approved a series of licenses that register Bally’s as a publicly traded company in the state, operate the Montbleu resort in Stateline at Lake Tahoe and issue favorable suitability findings for several of its executives following a nearly two-hour hearing.
“This was a very well-thought-through presentation,” Commissioner Steven Cohen said after Bally’s officials described their plans and answered questions.
Bally’s — a Providence, Rhode Island-based regional gaming company that has no affiliation with the Strip casino with the same name — acquired Montbleu in a two-property package deal for $155 million as part of Eldorado Resorts’ bid to divest properties in advance of its acquisition of Caesars Entertainment Inc. Bally’s was an alternate buyer after Eldorado had originally announced it was selling to privately held Maverick Gaming.
The Montbleu deal is expected to close in early April.
Bally’s views Montbleu as a destination resort for customers from its other operations nationwide.
The company, formerly known as Twin River Worldwide Holdings, has had another connection with Caesars — it acquired the Bally’s brand from that company in November.
Bally’s owns and operates gaming and racing facilities across the United States. Its gaming and racing facilities include slot machines and various casino table games, and restaurant and hotel facilities. As of December, it owned and operated 11 casinos that comprise 13,260 slot machines, 459 game tables, and 2,941 hotel rooms, as well as a horse racetrack across seven states.
Bally’s President and CEO George Papanier told commissioners his company has one of the best regional gaming footprints in the market and the third-largest footprint for online sports betting in the United States.
Bally’s also plans to leverage its recently announced partnership with Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc.
Sinclair, which operates 21 sports networks and 188 television stations across the United States, including KSNV Channel 3, Las Vegas’ NBC affiliate, plans to incorporate Bally’s branding to its regional sports networks.
Commissioners were expected to review Caesars’ $3.7 billion acquisition of William Hill U.S. later in Thursday’s meeting.
This is a developing story. Check back here for updates.
Contact Richard N. Velotta at [email protected] or 702-477-3893. Follow @RickVelotta on Twitter.