Caesars Southern Indiana Finds A New Owner

Posted on December 31, 2020

Sold! Caesars Southern Indiana has a new owner.

The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI) is officially buying the casino for $250 million.

The tribe has been checking out the property for some time, but just now put a deal together.

New owner for Caesars Southern Indiana

The EBCI is based in North Carolina, and it already operates a handful of its own casinos.

However, all of those casinos are on the tribe’s own sovereign lands. Caesars Southern is the EBCI’s first casino that it didn’t build itself.

According to EBCI Principal Chief Richard Sneed, these kinds of deals could become a much bigger part of the tribe’s future.

“The purchase of Caesars Southern Indiana operating company marks the beginning of an exciting new future for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. We are pleased to build upon our long-standing partnership with Caesars as we look to advance our interests in commercial gaming in the coming years.”

Regulars at Caesars Southern should expect a pretty smooth transition.

As part of the sale, the property will still get to use the Caesars brand and Caesars Rewards loyalty program. So in other words, things will stay more or less the same for gamblers at the property.

The sale of the casino couldn’t have come at a better time for the company.

Caesars was up against the clock with the final days of 2020 ticking away.

When Caesars merged with Eldorado Resorts earlier this year, the approval of that merger came with the condition that the company sell three of its casinos in the Hoosier State. The Indiana Gaming Commission created that requirement to help prevent one company from dominating the state’s gambling industry.

Caesars had until Dec. 31 to offload the properties, so things at Caesars Southern finished up right against the deadline.

Longer deadline to sell Horseshoe Hammond

Along with Caesars Southern, the company also decided to offload Tropicana Evansville and Horseshoe Hammond.

With all three casinos changing hands, Caesars would finally satisfy the gaming commission’s requirement.

Since Caesars Southern now belongs to the EBCI, the company has completed two of the three sales. Tropicana Evansville was sold off to Twin River Holdings back in October.

Caesars Southern and Tropicana may have finally found buyers, but the same can’t be said for Horseshoe Hammond. With the Dec. 31 deadline looming, there just isn’t enough time for Caesars to sell the property.

However, the company can’t sell the casino if no one wants to buy it.

Caesars is selling Horseshoe Hammond to avoid increasing competition from the Illinois side of the border. With Chicago area casinos drawing in customers and the new Hard Rock casino opening in Gary, there’s more competition than ever in the area.

That could be part of the reason that Caesars has had such a hard time finding a buyer for the property.

Regardless, the Indiana Gaming Commission understands the position that Caesars is in here. Because of that, the commission is extending Caesars’ deadline to sell Horseshoe Hammond.

With another year to make good on its promise, Caesars should have plenty of time to offload the casino by Dec. 31, 2021.

Photo by Dreamstime
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Jake Garza

Jake Garza is a US Gambling Industry Analyst for Catena Media. He specializes in Midwest sports betting and casino content. Prior to covering the legal gambling industry, he spent time as a professional sports writer, reporting on teams such as the Cincinnati Bengals, Indianapolis Colts and Indiana Pacers. Garza is currently working as a Managing Editor for PlayIndiana and PlayOhio, with previous stops at other well-known brands such as PlayIllinois and PlayMichigan. He has been covering the gambling industry since 2019, and currently works with a team of other journalists to provide comprehensive coverage of the legal U.S. gambling industry.

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