Last month we covered the story that the FTC had given approval to Eldorado resorts for their acquisition of Caesars Entertainment Corp. for $17.3 billion. Since that merger we are seeing some big changes come to light. In Atlantic City for example they will see a healthy $400 million pumped into the 3 casinos now under Eldorado’s umbrella. This may also be great news for William Hill, who look set to take over New Jersey sports betting operations.
There is already William Hill presence in New Jersey, at the Monmouth Park racetrack, and soon they will much larger operations here. Capping another great for William Hill, having opened back up in NJ at the beginning of July, which we covered here, and now looking at expansion plans. William Hill is the principle operator of Eldorado’s sportsbooks, making them the likely candidates to take over New Jersey sports betting operations in the newly acquired hotels.
Making It Official
Following a July 8 meeting with the Nevada Gaming Board of Control, William Hill US and Caesars Entertainment released the following:
“William Hill currently operates Eldorado’s sportsbooks across the country. Following the closure of Eldorado’s merger with Caesars Entertainment, and subject to regulatory approvals, William Hill would begin assuming the operation of Caesars’ sportsbooks, mobile apps and trading operations. The parties are committed to ensuring a smooth transition for employees and customers.”
Beyond the racetrack at Monmouth Park, William Hill have been operating since 2018 in the Ocean Resort casino. This move looks set to catapult the bookmaker to become the primary provider of New jersey sports betting operations. Eldorado now owns the Tropicana, Harrah’s Resort and Caesars in Atlantic City, at least 2 of those are expected to feature the bookmaker. Eldorado have also acquired Bally’s Casino as part of the deal, it is unlikely to feature William Hill however as there is a pending $25 million sale.
The seamless transition which they discuss will likely be part of massive renovation work which must be carried out on the 3 casinos. Caesars for example has an outstanding online casino, which we reviewed here, but the Atlantic City hotel and casino is in dire need of updating. This renovation work must be carried out as per the regulations included in Eldorado’s merger with Caesars.
New Jersey Sports Betting
There are currently 14 sportsbooks with a license to provide New Jersey sports betting services. With this expected expansion in AC, it is likely that William Hill will gain further dominance in the state. The bookmaker has an excellent reputation and since its arrival in NJ in 2018, it has really put its stamp of authority on New Jersey sports betting operations. We gave a glowing review to the sportsbook when it was first released, and it has only improved since then.
There is no mistaking the ambition of William Hill, which has sought to gain a sizable market share in the US since the landmark PASPA law change in 2018. Just last year the bookmaker made the purchase of CG Technology Sports Book Assets, gaining access to several casinos in Vegas. The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, The Venetian, The Palazzo, The Palms, and The Silverton are all included in this deal.
It would seem that with the work that Eldorado are doing, the bookmaker now has its sights on New jersey sports betting operations. Eldorado has a market share of 29% in the casino trade, and William Hill have positioned themselves perfectly. William Hill CEO Ulrik Bengtsson spoke about the “excellent’ progress which they have made in the US:
“It’s hard to deny that we are already in the second wave in the U.S. to some extent … as long as major sport events are back, we are quite confident of how this business is going to develop,”
This second wave is no doubt going to be heavily focused on what happens in NJ. We reported on how this merger between Eldorado and Caesars makes them the world’s largest casino operator, and that is exactly what the British bookmaker needs to further its march into the US.