On December 20, sports betting company William Hill announced that they had joined forces with Circus Circus, taking over their sportsbook operation. This move will take effect immediately and comes one day after Phil Ruffin officially sold his property to MGM Resorts International for $825 million.
It was a combined deal for Ruffin, the owner of Treasure Island. The $825 million sale turns over the Circus Circus Las Vegas to the MGM Resorts property. At the same time, he made the deal with William Hill to subsequently turn over their sportsbook operation.
According to the deal, the purchase price will be $662.5 million in cash and a $162.5 million note which will be due by 2024. It is expected that MGM will use the money to further its capital allocation strategy.
In speaking about the strategy, MGM chairman and CEO Jim Murren added that “MGM Resorts has engaged in an exhaustive process to evaluate its owned real estate and remains committed to executing its asset-light strategy in a measured way that maximizes value for its shareholders.”
It appears that William Hill has big plans for the sportsbook site. In a statement, they explained that “The sportsbook will be renovated after the Super Bowl, with plans for a grand opening celebration ahead of the 2019/2020 March Madness College Basketball Tournament. The remodeled space will feature updated video screens, odds boards, seating, and more.”
Executives at William Hill are also excited about the prospect of working with Ruffin. In a statement provided by Joe Asher, the CEO of William Hill U.S., he stated, “Phil Ruffin has been a great partner, and we look forward to working with him as he breathes new life into this iconic property. Circus Circus is a Las Vegas landmark with more than 50 years of history. The north end of The Strip has so many new and updated offerings opening over the next few years and we’re excited to plant another flag in this part of town.”
Ruffin echoed the sentiments. He is excited about William Hill overseeing the property. “William Hill has been a leader in sports betting for more than 85 years and is one of the most trusted brands in the industry. I can’t wait to see the remodeled space next year.”
In a press release, William Hill stated that the new sportsbook will offer access to “William Hill’s industry-leading mobile app, kiosks, and InPlay wagering menu.” The two groups came together to open the William Hill Race Book at Casino Miami in Florida.