Belterra Casino in Florence, Indiana.
(Switzerland County, Ind.) - The company that owns Belterra Casino in Switzerland County is expanding.
Pinnacle Entertainment announced Friday that it is buying rival Ameristar Casinos for $869 million. The deal - expected to close in the third quarter of 2013 - will double the number of casinos Pinnacle owns to 16.
The agreement includes Pinnacle taking on $1.9 billion in debt. Before it can close, the deal will need the approval of the Indiana Gaming Commission.
Pinnacle Entertainment also owns River Downs Horse Track in Cincinnati. Ameristar owns Ameristar Casino in East Chicago, Indiana.
"The acquisition of Ameristar is a transformative transaction for Pinnacle that will provide us the scale and diversification to more effectively compete. The coupling of Pinnacle and Ameristar properties will create a terrific portfolio of quality assets to serve our combined guests. Over recent years, we have made tremendous progress at Pinnacle in providing a higher level of service to our guests and improving our financial performance. We are thrilled about the opportunities that will be created by combining the two companies. Both companies have developed cultures where team members are focused on providing a high quality experience to their guests and delivering outstanding financial outcomes for their shareholders. Our operating philosophy and cultures are perfectly aligned,” said Anthony Sanfilippo, President and Chief Executive Officer of Pinnacle Entertainment.