UPDATE: On Tuesday, the NJCCC approved a plenary license for Eldorado as a casino holding company, allowing its takeover of the Tropicana. The original article appears below.
Eldorado Resorts is hoping that it can pick up a permanent license to operate The Tropicana Atlantic City in New Jersey. It has filed a request for the license, which is expected to be reviewed today by the New Jersey Casino Control Commission (NJCCC) as part of the commission’s planned agenda.
Eldorado purchased Tropicana Entertainment about eight months ago, which, along with other assets, gave it the Atlantic City venue. That acquisition put Eldorado out $1.85 billion, and is now looking to receive full approval to operate the resort. It has been working through an interim license that was issued last September after the acquisition was finalized.
Tropicana has been around since 1981 as part of the Boardwalk group of casinos in Atlantic City. It is one of only a few that has survived turbulent economic times in New Jersey and which has continued to be a steady attraction, continuing to be the second-highest grossing venue, after the Borgata. The venue offers a casino, a hotel with 2,400 rooms, restaurants and retail options, an IMAX movie theater, a spa and an entertainment complex.
Tropicana is also home to one of New Jersey’s sportsbooks. It launched the operations last October, five months after the US Supreme Court decided that federal lawmakers were wrong when the signed off on the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA) that banned states from offering sports gambling. The casino introduced a temporary in-person sportsbook through a partnership with William Hill that has now been converted into a permanent operation as of this past March.
Getting the approval of the NJCCC would be a nice gesture, but it is almost a certainty, so it won’t be much of a coup. However, another deal in the works would certainly be a huge deal for Eldorado. The company is reportedly in advanced stages of negotiations with Caesars Entertainment to form a merger that could create a massive gambling company in the US. The multibillion-dollar deal would be forged through an exchange of cash and stock that would ultimately, if approved by regulators, create one of the largest gambling companies in the world.