MTR Gaming Group, which owns Mountaineer Casino Racetrack and Resort, announced Monday it would merge with the privately held Eldorado Resorts in an all-stock deal.
Under the terms of the deal, MTR will combine with the parent company of Eldorado Resorts, remain publicly traded on the Nasdaq and be called Eldorado Resorts Inc.
The new company will operate six properties with 9,968 slot machines and video lottery terminals, 283 table games and 3,282 hotel rooms.
Eldorado owners will be issued 55 percent of the new company’s total shares, valued at $5.15, while current MTR shareholders will receive a cash election option of $5.15 per share up to 5.8 million shares, which is significantly higher than the value of current MTR shares.
The move comes as the gaming markets in Pennsylvania and Ohio are growing crowded and more competitive. In 2009, Ohio voters approved four casinos that operate in Toledo, Columbus, Cincinnati and Cleveland.
Next year, Penn National will open a racetrack and racino in Austintown.
“We are excited to announce this transformative transaction, which creates a new gaming platform with a diversified portfolio across the country,” said Gary Carano, who will become the new chief executive officer of the company. “Our strong balance sheet will allow us to take advantage of future growth opportunities as the gaming industry continues to consolidate.”
The transaction is expected to close in mid-2014.