Pennsylvania’s Second Mini-Casino Auction Process Fails to Attract Bidders


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Pennsylvania’s Second Mini-Casino Auction Process Fails to Attract Bidders

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) concluded on Wednesday the auction process for satellite casinos after an unsuccessful attempt to attract bidders for five more mini-casino locations around the state.

The state gambling regulator held five successful auctions from January to April 2018, which resulted in the state collecting $127 million in bids for obtaining a Category 4 satellite casino license.

The issuance of such licenses was part of a massive gambling expansion package approved by Pennsylvania’s Legislature and Governor in the fall of 2017. Under the provisions of the Gaming Expansion Act of 2017, the state Gaming Control Board was authorized to grant up to 10 Category 4 Slot Machine Operator Licenses through auction processes.

During last year’s auction process, the regulator attracted bidders for five locations. Due to the lack of interest in the five other locations, the PGCB decided to close the auction process and to reopen it at a later point, hoping for a fresh round of bids. The board announced last month that the process would reopen on September 4.

Each license came at a minimum price of $7.5 million. Only existing casino operators in the state were allowed to bid for the mini-casinos. Under the state’s gambling law, a Category 4 license authorizes holders to operate a satellite location with between 300 and 750 slot machines. An additional fee of $2.5 million allows operators to add up to 30 table games at their mini-casinos with the option to be allowed to add 10 more after the facilities’ first year of operation.

No Further Auctions To Be Held

The board said last month that it would not hold any further auctions if no bids were generated on September 4. This means that the state will now have only five mini-casinos instead of ten.

Last year, Penn National Gaming won two auctions – one for a mini-casino in Caernarvon Township and the other in York County. The company operates Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course.

Stadium Casino LLC, the company that is currently building Philadelphia’s second casino, won an auction to develop a satellite casino in Westmoreland County. The operator of Mount Airy Casino Resort won the bid for a mini-casino in Beaver County, and Greenwood Gaming and Entertainment, the owner of Parx Casino, won the auction for a Category 4 facility in Shippensburg Township.

Of those five, only two have received their Category 4 licenses so far. Penn National Gaming was awarded its Caernarvon Township license on June 12, 2019. The company bid $7,500,003 last year to win the right to develop the facility.

The PGCB issued a license to Stadium Casino for its Westmoreland County mini-casino on August 14, 2019. The operator placed a $40,100,005 bid last year.

The York County mini-casino license saw Penn National bi $50.1 million. The Beaver County license came at a final price of $21,188,888.88, while the Shippensburg Township mini-casino license was auctioned at $8,111,000 million.

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The post Pennsylvania’s Second Mini-Casino Auction Process Fails to Attract Bidders appeared first on Casino News Daily.


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