Churchill Downs Incorporated is partnering with fellow American casino and racetrack operator Saratoga Casino Holdings in order to acquire the firms behind Maryland’s Casino At Ocean Downs and its associated Ocean Downs Racetrack.

Louisville-based Churchill Downs Incorporated is the company behind casinos including Maine’s Oxford Casino as well as the Riverwalk Casino Hotel in Mississippi and revealed that its new Old Bay Gaming And Racing joint venture intends to purchase firms Ocean Enterprise 589, Ocean Downs and Racing Services for an undisclosed amount from a private ownership group led by businessman William Rickman.

“By virtue of its 25% ownership of Saratoga Casino Holdings, Churchill Downs Incorporated will indirectly own an additional 12.5% of [Old Bay Gaming And Racing] for a total interest in [Old Bay Gaming And Racing] of 62.5%,” read a statement from Churchill Downs Incorporated.

Churchill Downs Incorporated stated that the planned deal will also include Rickman, who is Executive Vice-President for current operator Maryland Gaming, serving as a senior advisor to Old Bay Gaming And Racing in order to “ensure that this strategic partnership is successful”. In addition, the proposed transaction is to see Denise Hill, Government Relations Director for Maryland Gaming, and the firm’s General Manager, Joseph Cavilla, remain in their roles post-closing.

Rickman purchased Casino At Ocean Downs and Ocean Downs Racetrack in 2000 before rebuilding the casino ten years later. As a result, the facility on approximately 168 acres of land in Berlin, Maryland, now offers some 800 video lottery terminals and electronic gaming tables as well as a schedule of live seasonal harness racing.

“The closing is subject to the satisfaction or waiver of specified closing conditions including, without limitation, the approval of all relevant governmental authorities including the Maryland Lottery And Gaming Control Agency and the Maryland Racing Commission and receipt of all necessary licenses and permits for [Old Bay Gaming And Racing] to operate the companies,” read the statement from Churchill Downs Incorporated. “The transaction is expected to close later this year subject to receipt of all necessary approvals.”

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