Casino operator Twin River Worldwide Holdings (TRWH) has bought into the Illinois market with an eye towards cashing in on the state’s growing sports betting market.
On Thursday, TRWH announced a $120m cash deal with rival Delaware North Companies Gaming & Entertainment to acquire the latter firm’s Jumer’s Casino & Hotel in Rock Island, Illinois. TRWH expects the deal to close in Q2 2021, subject to regulatory approvals and other closing conditions.
Jumer’s (pictured) has a 40k-square-foot gaming floor with 870 slots, 25 gaming tables, a 205-room hotel, as well as an event center, sports bar, nightclub and four restaurants. The deal price represents a multiple of approximately 7.4x trailing earnings for 2019 and TRWH expects the property to be immediately accretive to earnings.
The deal would boost TRWH’s growing casino empire to 13 properties across nine states, and TRWH CEO George Papanier said the company would continue to “opportunistically expand our regional presence” despite lingering uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Papanier added that adding Jumer’s to the fold offered “the potential to capitalize on potentially lucrative sports betting opportunities.” TRWH’s two casinos in its native Rhode Island recently enjoyed a spike in wagering activity after an extremely slow start, and the company’s imminent entry into New Jersey’s casino market has seen the company eagerly striking new sports betting partnerships.
POINTSBET OPENS ILLINOIS RETAIL SPORTSBOOK
The Illinois betting market is off to a roaring start, thanks in part to Gov. J.B. Pritzker temporarily waiving the requirement for online bettors to register new accounts at land-based gaming venues. Last week, Pritzker extended online-only registration until October 17, making it easier for other bettors to join the estimated 230k accounts opened as of mid-September.
Sports betting operator PointsBet launched its Illiinois-licensed betting app last month through its local partner, Hawthorne Race Course. On Thursday, PointsBet announced the launch of retail betting operations at the Hawthorne track, which the companies note is just 10 short miles from downtown Chicago.
The PointsBet Sportsbook at Hawthorne features the usual array of big-screen TVs, along with 20 self-service betting kiosks to ensure you don’t need to get too close to anyone else’s COVID cooties. Six of those kiosks are located in the facility’s ‘bet-and-go’ lobby for those who’d rather not breathe recycled air any longer than they have to.
Hawthorne is currently developing a new $400m venue that’s scheduled to open in late-2021, and PointsBet is promising a ‘premium’ retail operation at the new digs. In the meantime, PointsBet will open another three smaller betting operations in Club Hawthorne off-track betting bars in the coming weeks.