The American global hospitality and entertainment giant MGM Resorts in the process of acquiring the Empire City Casino in New York for $850 million. The casino is located 15 miles from the Times Square.

Currently, there are about 150 poker tables catering to New York poker players. Resorts World Catskill, having a 19-table room, is 90 miles away. Poker rooms in Philadelphia are 80-90 miles away. The one in Atlantic City is 120 miles from NYC. Therefore, hopes are riding high on the new-found acquisition.

MGM Resorts And Its Poker Plans

It’s been long since MGM was lobbying for a casino in the Big Apple. However, due to unfavourable regulations, it didn’t materialize, until now. However, the ambitious business venture is all set to take off.

Weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court gave a verdict in favour of sports betting, MGM made an announcement about this acquisition. Not to forget, MGM played a pivotal role in pushing for online poker in New York State.

A few years back, in 2015, at a hearing in Albany, MGM’s general counsel said: “If the gaming industry doesn’t innovate, it will be Amazon’ed by other forms of entertainment. Internet poker can be effectively regulated.”

Under the deal, MGM Growth Properties, company’s real estate investment trust, will acquire the casino from MGM Resorts for $625 million. It will then lease it back to a subsidiary of MGM Resorts.

Even though Empire City is not like a Las Vegas-style casino, one cannot ignore the scope of expansion in future.

If Empire City receives a license for live table games by December 31, 2022, and MGM Resorts accepts it by December 31, 2024, MGM will pay an additional $50 million.

“This acquisition represents an excellent opportunity to further solidify our presence on the East Coast, and in particular, expand our reach into the high-density New York City region,” said Jim Murren, Chairman and CEO of MGM Resorts.

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