A vehicle held by Great Canadian Gaming Corp (TSX: GC) and Clairvest Group, a Canadian private equity firm, has been selected to run and develop four Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp (OLG) gaming facilities in West Toronto. No financial terms were disclosed for the deal, which is expected to close next year. It will see Great Canadian and Clairvest hold 55 percent and 45 percent, respectively, of the partnership operating the facilities, which include over 2,500 slot machines and about 60 table games, and generated revenue of about $450 million in fiscal 2017. Great Canadian joined Brookfield Asset Management in acquiring OLG gaming assets in August.
Great Canadian Gaming and Clairvest Group Inc. awarded West GTA Bundle in Ontario gaming modernization process
COQUITLAM, BC and TORONTO, Dec. 19, 2017 /CNW/ – Great Canadian Gaming Corporation (TSX:GC) (“Great Canadian”) and Clairvest Group Inc. (TSX:CVG) (“Clairvest”) announce today that they have been selected as the successful proponent by the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (“OLG”) to operate certain gaming facilities in the West Greater Toronto Area (the “West GTA Bundle”).
The West GTA Bundle is comprised of OLG Casino Brantford, OLG Slots at Mohawk Racetrack, OLG Slots at Flamboro Downs and OLG Slots at Grand River Raceway. These facilities have a combined total of over 2,500 slot machines, approximately 60 table games, employ more than 1,400 staff, and generated approximately $450 million in gross gaming revenue in fiscal 2017.
Great Canadian and Clairvest will invest through a newly formed partnership, Ontario Gaming West GTA Limited Partnership (the “Partnership”), with Great Canadian owning 55 per cent and Clairvest owning 45 per cent. Great Canadian will develop and operate the gaming facilities within the West GTA Bundle on behalf of the Partnership.
As a result of this award, the Partnership will acquire all the gaming assets in the West GTA Bundle and will enter into leases for each of the facilities. It will have the exclusive right to operate these assets for a minimum period of 20 years, in accordance with the requirements of a Casino Operating and Services Agreement. The closing will be completed under the terms of a Transition and Asset Purchase Agreement entered into with OLG.
With years of gaming, racing, hospitality, and development expertise, the Partnership will provide strategic vision and operational modernization that will add extensive non-gaming amenities and expanded gaming offerings to ensure properties in the West GTA Bundle deliver a premier gaming and entertainment experience. The Partnership intends on a significant capital investment in each of the four properties to expand and reposition them that at full build out will create up to 1650 new jobs in gaming, entertainment, and hospitality, while also ensuring each property appeals to a wide spectrum of the marketplace.
The Partnership envisions dramatic enhancements and additions at Mohawk, Flamboro Downs, and Grand River that will create a seamless and integrated experience for the guest for racing, gaming and hospitality, while undertaking a significant top-to-bottom renovation of the Brantford facility.
With years of experience in horse racing in Ontario and other jurisdictions, the Partnership looks forward to collaborating with racing industry stakeholders to work toward the ongoing sustainability of horse racing in the West GTA marketplace. The Partnership also recognizes the significance of these properties in their local communities, and appreciates the importance of engaging early with local community leaders, stakeholder groups, and First Nations.
“Being awarded the West GTA Bundle is a true milestone for Great Canadian and the Partnership. We thank OLG for their confidence in our company and for providing us the opportunity to showcase and apply our gaming, racing, hospitality and development expertise to the selected properties,” said Rod N. Baker, Great Canadian’s President and CEO. “As a Canadian company that has a long history of responsibly and successfully operating gaming and racing facilities across Canada, we are excited to undertake what we feel will be a dramatic transformation of the entertainment experience at these four properties, for the teams that work there, and the communities they reside in.”
Baker continued, “With our longstanding role in horse racing, we appreciate the significance and importance of the harness racing industry provincially, but more particularly, across the West GTA region. We’re eager not only to embark upon our exciting development plans for the four properties, but also for the role we feel we can play in working with track operators, racing stakeholders, OLG, the provincial government and other interested parties in sustaining the industry and growing the number of jobs the industry supports.”
“We are thrilled that OLG has selected the Partnership as the service provider for the West GTA Bundle. Together with Great Canadian, we are confident in our ability to deliver a unique and spectacular gaming and entertainment experience at the four properties within the bundle,” said Jeff Parr, Co-Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Clairvest Group Inc.
The closing date for the acquisition of the assets and assumption of certain liabilities from OLG, including the signing of a Casino Operating and Services Agreement with OLG, is expected to be in spring 2018, allowing for a seamless operational transition. Closing is subject to regulatory approvals and other customary conditions.
About Great Canadian Gaming Corporation:
Founded in 1982, Great Canadian Gaming Corporation is a BC based company that operates 22 gaming, entertainment and hospitality facilities in British Columbia, Ontario, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Washington State. Fundamental to the company’s culture is its commitment to social responsibility. “PROUD of our people, our business, our community” is Great Canadian’s brand that unifies the company’s community, volunteering and social responsibility efforts. Under the PROUD program, Great Canadian annually invests over $2.5 million in our communities, and in 2016, over 1,500 charitable organizations were supported by Great Canadian. In each Canadian gaming jurisdiction, a significant portion of gross gaming revenue from gaming facilities is retained by our crown partners on behalf of their provincial government for the purpose of supporting programs like healthcare, education and social services.
About Clairvest Group Inc.:
Clairvest Group Inc. is a private equity investor which invests its own capital, and that of third parties through the Clairvest Equity Partners (“CEP”) limited partnerships, in businesses that have the potential to generate superior returns. In addition to providing financing, Clairvest contributes strategic expertise and execution ability to support the growth and development of its investee partners. Clairvest realizes value through investment returns and the eventual disposition of its investments.
For further information: Media Contact: Sonja Mandic, Director Media Relations and Social Responsibility, Great Canadian Gaming Corporation, Tel: 604.889.7114, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; Media Contact: Maria Klyuev, Director, Investor Relations and Marketing, Clairvest Group Inc., Tel: 416.925.9270, Fax: 416.925.5753, www.clairvest.com
Photo courtesy of Great Canadian Gaming Corp