Thursday, September 15, 2022
(Albuquerque) –Laguna Development Corporation (LDC) signed a definitive agreement to sell the company’s Kentucky subsidiary Ellis Park Racing and Gaming to Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI) Nasdaq (CHDN) for total consideration of $79 million in cash, subject to certain working capital and other purchase price adjustments. CDI will also assume Ellis Park’s opportunity to construct a track extension facility in Owensboro, Kentucky. The sale is subject to approval by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission.
An LDC subsidiary formed Ellis Entertainment to purchase Ellis Park, a horse racing track and gaming establishment, in June of 2019. The purchase price was $11 million. Over the past three and a half years, Ellis Entertainment transformed Ellis Park into a strong competitor in the Kentucky racing and gaming market by improving the facility and gaming operations. Ellis Entertainment also took advantage of legislation to expand its gaming operations in Kentucky.
In announcing the sale Maxine Velasquez, President/CEO of LDC said, “This transaction is an opportunity to generate a significant profit for LDC and the Pueblo of Laguna. The cash generated by the sale provides much-needed capital to improve and expand LDC businesses in New Mexico, benefit our shareholder, and advance future business development efforts.”
Today, LDC currently manages and operates the 154-room Route 66 Casino Hotel, Casino Xpress, The Route 66 Travel Centers on Interstate 40, Exit 108 and 140, 66 Pit Stop Gas Station & Convenience Stores at Exits 114 and 140, Route 66 RV Resort, Dancing Eagle Casino, the Dancing Eagle RV Park, The Marketplace @ Dancing Eagle grocery store and an extensive food & beverage operation with 15 outlets including Thunder Road Steakhouse and Cantina, The Great American Diner and four World Famous Laguna Burger locations.
TFA Securities, Inc. provided financial advisory services to LDC and Stites & Harbison was LDC’s legal advisor.