The Nevada Gaming Control Board (NGCB) has recommended approval of licenses for both William Hill and Bally’s.
William Hill US, which has more than 120 sportsbook and kiosk locations across the state and is a subsidiary of the UK-based William Hill Plc, would become the centerpiece of Caesars’ sports wagering operation if the board’s unanimous recommendation is adopted by the Nevada Gaming Commission when it meets March 18.
Caesars’ $3.7 billion deal for William Hill, first announced in April and approved by shareholders of both companies, is scheduled to close on March 23. The two companies currently operate as a joint venture with 20% and 80% equity ownership respectively.
Through the existing joint venture, William Hill runs online sports betting operations through Caesars’ market access in each state and retail sports betting operations in Caesars’ properties as well as those of other casino operators around the United States. Caesars owns and operates 54 domestic properties in 16 states. The company’s resorts operate primarily under the Caesars, Harrah’s, Horseshoe, and Eldorado brand names.
Caesars CEO Tom Reeg said he expects sportsbooks to help drive traffic to other parts of the casino.
“We’ve seen customers show up that were not otherwise coming that skews younger, tends to be a table-games customer, tends to drink a lot of beer — all good for a casino operator,” Reeg said.
Also, the board recommended a series of licenses that would register Bally’s Corp as a publicly-traded company in the state, operate the Montbleu resort in Stateline at Lake Tahoe and issue favorable suitability findings for several of its executives.