Penn National Greenlighted to Run Hollywood Casino Perryville

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Penn National Gaming announced Thursday it has received final regulatory approval to acquire the operations of Hollywood Casino Perryville. It paves the way for the company to enter Maryland less than two weeks after sports betting was legalized in the state, and a few months ahead of an expected launch by NFL 2021.

The Pennsylvania-based casino company entered into a definitive agreement with Gaming and Leisure Properties in Dec. 2020 to acquire operations of Hollywood Casino Perryville for $31.1 million in cash, subject to certain customary working capital adjustments. The Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control commission’s approval comes nearly six months after the PNG-GLP agreement when it gave the final approval this week.

At the time of the announcement, it was also agreed that with the closing of the transaction, Penn National would also enter into a lease with the real estate investment trust company for the real estate assets associated with the acquired facility with an annual rent of roughly $7.77 million. The initial lease term would be 15 years, which could be extended to another 20 years.

Homecoming for Penn National

President and CEO of Penn National Jay Snowden thanked the commission and the staff for their time and effort in reviewing and approving PNG’s license to operate Hollywood Casino Perryville.

“We’re excited to be re-entering the Maryland market at a property we developed in 2010,” Snowden said while adding that the site would add a twentieth gaming jurisdiction.

In addition, Snowden said Penn National is equally thrilled to be entering the market at a crucial phase following the legalization of sports betting in Old Line State a few weeks ago.

 On May 18, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan signed the sports betting bill into law ahead of an expected launch by fall 2021.

Snowden hopes the acquisition of the casino property would allow the company to expand its omnichannel platform with a Barstool-branded retail sportsbook and mobile app.

The transaction is expected to close in mid-2021.

Penn’s Quarterly Report

Earlier this month, Penn National released its first quarterly financial report, which included $1.27 billion in revenue, representing a 14% year-over-year growth.

At the time of the announcement of the Q1 report, Snowden said the company kicked off the year with record results in the opening quarter of 2021 from PNG’s land-based business and the launch of the Barstool Sportsbook app in Michigan and Illinois.

The casino operator also reported net incomes of up to $90 million, compared to a $608 million loss for the same period in 2020.

Hollywood Casino Perryville

Hollywood Casino Perryville was the first casino in Maryland when it was opened to the gamblers in Sep. 2010. The casino was built on property off Route 222, roughly three miles north of the center of Perryville.

The establishment was owned by Gaming and Leisure Properties, which initially was a subsidiary of Penn National Gaming. In 2013, the real estate investment trust was spun off from the parent company.

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