Penn National out at Maryland Jockey Club
June 16, 2011
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Penn National Gaming Inc. announced on Thursday that has entered into a definitive agreement to sell its joint venture interest in the Maryland Jockey Club to Stron-MJC Limited Partnership. As announced by MI Developments Inc., Penn National's joint venture partner, an affiliate of MI Developments Inc. will also transfer its interest in the Maryland Jockey Club to an affiliate of Stron-MJC Limited Partnership as part of a transaction approved by the shareholders of MI Developments Inc. that is scheduled to close on June 30, 2011.
Earlier this year Penn National Gaming acquired Rosecroft Raceway and advised the Maryland Racing Commission and Maryland harness horsemen that it hopes to reopen Rosecroft Raceway for a short harness meet in September. The renegotiation of simulcast splits with the Maryland Jockey Club, and the revenues that would flow to Rosecroft from a reopened simulcast operation, could pave the way for a longer meet. The renegotiation of a simulcasting agreement, which also promises a subsidy from slots revenues per legislation approved and signed by Maryland's governor, has been held up by the plan of Penn National to divest itself of its interest in the Maryland Jockey Club.
Penn National Gaming and MI Developments established the joint venture to own and operate the Maryland Jockey Club's racing assets, training facilities and real estate in mid 2010.
Peter M. Carlino, Chief Executive Officer of Penn National, commented, "While we are divesting our interest in the Maryland Jockey Club, Penn National Gaming remains committed to racing and gaming in Maryland. With our acquisition earlier this year of Rosecroft Raceway in Oxon Hill and our successful opening last fall of the state's first VLT facility, we will focus our resources on further strengthening the racing and operations at Rosecroft and building on the initial success of Hollywood Casino Perryville. We believe that the Maryland Jockey Club, Pimlico and Laurel Park will be well served under the single ownership of The Stronach Group and we wish them success with these historic racing venues."
The transaction is expected to be completed in the next few months and is subject to approvals from the Maryland Racing Commission and the satisfaction of certain other customary closing conditions.