Churchill Downs buys majority stake in Rivers Casino Des Plaines

Casino and betting operator Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI) has agreed to pay up to $500m to acquire an Illinois casino property.

On Wednesday, CDI announced that it had signed a definitive purchase agreement to acquire “at least” a 50.1% stake in Midwest Gaming Holdings, the parent company of the Rivers Casino Des Plaines in Des Plaines, Illinois.

CDI will pay $291m for 100% of the Clairvest Group’s stake in Midwest Gaming, and has made an offer to purchase additional units of Midwest held by Rush Street Gaming affiliate High Plaines Gaming, and Casino Investors LLC, that will bring the aggregate cash consideration to $326m. Assuming the deal goes through, CDI and Rush Street will jointly control Rivers Des Plaines.

But wait, there’s more. The parties are also planning a complicated recapitalization transaction in which Midwest will use roughly $300m in proceeds from new credit facilities to purchase additional Midwest shares held by Rush Street and Casino Investors. Plus, if we’re reading correctly, one of the parties gets prima nocta rights with some Illinois farmer’s daughter.

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