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The well-known Nevada-based casino company Caesars Entertainment Corp. has threatened to pull out of its $90 million casino project in Indiana if the state’s gaming regulators go ahead with their plan to slap a transfer fee on its purchase of Centaur Gaming LLC.

Centaur Gaming LLC is a privately owned U.S. casino based in Indiana that offers a variety of gaming and racing facilities, including both live and simulcast horse racing.

Caesars Entertainment, which is based in Las Vegas, publicly revealed late last year that it had come to an agreement to buy Centaur Gaming LLC. for a total of U.S. $1.7 billion. The deal also included its two gaming venues based in Indiana — the Grand Racing and Casino (Indiana Grand) in Shelbyville and the Hoosier Park Racing Casino (Hoosier Park).

Furthermore, for the deal to be completed, it first needs to be examined and approved by the Indiana Gaming Commission and the Indiana Horse Racing Commission. Both entities are set to consider the transaction by May or June.

However, a recent report by the Indiana Business Journal stated Caesars Entertainment, Centaur, and the Indiana Gaming Commission have been arguing about whether a $50 million transfer fee should be paid by the owner of the two gambling locales that are to be obtained.

At present, Caesars Entertainment has possession of Indiana-based properties, such as the Horseshoe Southern Indiana in Harrison County and the Horseshoe Hammond Casino in the northwest part of the state.

According to Indiana Gaming Law, a primary casino license owner should pay a $50 million transfer fee for the process of signing over the license when a controlling ante in the legalised properties is being sold to another independent business.

Just like other government rules, this law also has its own share of exceptions — for example if the first license holder has filed for bankruptcy before the transfer is launched or completed.

Centaur and Caesars Entertainment, meanwhile, believe that the transfer fee is no longer necessary since it has nothing to do with the initial license owners.

Nonetheless, the Indiana Gaming Commission has laid claim to some inconsistencies after further research found information that contradicted with the proposal.


Source: European Gaming Media and Events