Ameristar Casinos has announced that the Indiana Gaming Commission has approved
the transfer of the ownership interest in the Resorts East Chicago casino
license to Ameristar, clearing the way for the Company to enter the
nation’s third-largest commercial gaming market.East Chicago, Indiana, is
part of the Chicagoland market, which generates more than $2.5 billion in
gaming revenues annually and serves roughly 6.4 million adults.
The approval came earlier today during a regularly scheduled Commission
meeting. Ameristar anticipates closing the acquisition on Sept 18, 2007,
and will re-brand the property to the Ameristar name within 12 months,
after making improvements to the food and beverage offerings, the mix of
games on the casino floor and other aspects of the facility. The Company
also intends to adapt the Ameristar operational and marketing approaches at
East Chicago that have been successful in other markets.
“I want to thank the Commission for its thorough review of our
application as we move forward with the impending completion of this
acquisition,” said John Boushy, CEO and President of Ameristar. “We are
eager to begin operations in Indiana with a highly attractive market that
provides a stable regulatory environment. We look forward to introducing
our plans to establish the Ameristar brand in a new state and the
Chicagoland area over the next several months.”
Ameristar is purchasing the company that owns and operates Resorts East
Chicago from Resorts International Holdings, LLC for $675 million in cash.
Resorts International Holdings, LLC is an affiliate of Colony Capital and
its partner, Nicholas L. Ribis.