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Report: Caesars considering bid to buy Revel

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The Revel casino as seen from Atlantic City's Boardwalk.
The Revel casino as seen from Atlantic City's Boardwalk. - (NJBIZ file)

Caesars Entertainment Corp. is mulling whether to make a bid for the financially troubled Revel Casino Hotel in Atlantic City, Bloomberg News reported Wednesday.

The report said the Las Vegas-based gaming giant, New Jersey's largest casino operator, is still making up its mind. Bloomberg said offers for the property are due in two weeks, citing people who asked not to be named because the deliberations are private.

The news was the latest twist in Revel's brief history since it opened nearly two years ago, following years of other issues while it was in development. Owners of the $2.4 billion megaresort filed for bankruptcy in February, hoping to shed roughly two-thirds of its $1.5 billion debt load after falling way short of expectations in its first year.

In December, reports surfaced that Hard Rock International was considering its own bid.

Analysts interviewed by Bloomberg said acquiring Revel would refresh Caesar's aging portfolio of four casinos in Atlantic City. They also said the company, in theory, could use its huge customer database and loyalty programs to steer patrons there.

The Bloomberg report also raised questions about Caesars' complex and weighty debt situation, and whether such a transaction could lead to additional consolidation among Atlantic City's casinos. The struggling Atlantic Club closed its doors early this month, making it the first gaming hall in the resort to cease operations in seven years.

New Jersey's casino industry also continues to struggle as a whole. In 2013, the properties recorded less than $3 billion in gaming revenue for the first time in more than 20 years, continuing the freefall from its $5 billion peak in 2006.

 


 

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Joshua Burd

Joshua Burd

Josh Burd covers real estate, economic development and sports and entertainment. Before joining NJBIZ in 2011, he spent four years as a metro reporter in Central Jersey. His email is joshb@njbiz.com and he is @JoshBurdNJ on Twitter.

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