One of the top casino loyalty programs in the world is about to get even bigger.
Eldorado Resorts and Caesars Entertainment announced plans for a merger this week that will make it the largest gaming company in the U.S.
The deal will not close until at least the first half of 2020. But when it does, the new Caesars will include up to 60 casino properties in 16 states, all of which will adopt the Caesars Rewards loyalty program.
The merged company may sell off local assets to ease New Jersey Casino Control Commission concerns or comply with federal antitrust laws. However, if things remain as they are, four of Atlantic City’s nine casinos will be Caesars Rewards properties by the middle of next year.
Caesars Rewards’ growth
This includes the following three Caesars Entertainment Atlantic City casinos:
Plus, there’s Tropicana Atlantic City, of which Eldorado took control after finalizing a $1.85 billion deal to purchase parent company Tropicana Entertainment Inc. in 2018.
Caesars Entertainment CEO Tony Rodio sent an email to Caesars Rewards members claiming the merger means “more choices in even more places, giving you access to approximately 60 properties across 16 states.”
Rodio assured members that the Caesars Rewards program would remain intact and be implemented by the combined company. He added there would be no change to current members’ Tier Status or Reward Credit balances.
Caesars Rewards re-branding
Formally Total Rewards, the program has long been one of the largest and most acclaimed in the American casino industry.
In January, Caesars re-branded the program as Caesars Rewards. The more than 55 million Total Rewards members worldwide were automatically transitioned to the new Caesars Rewards program on Feb. 1. It is assumed the newly formed company will invite existing Eldorado customers to do the same once the merger closes.
Caesars Rewards members can currently earn and redeem credits at more than 38 Caesars resorts and casinos across the U.S. That will be bumped up to as many as 60 resorts and casinos once the merger is complete.
According to an Eldorado press release, the new Caesars will be the largest gambling operator in the U.S. when the deal closes. Eldorado Resorts shareholders will own 51% of the new company and Caesars shareholders the other 49%.
Harrah’s sold in leaseback deal
Atlantic City will feel the immediate impact of the merger. Eldorado is selling Harrah’s Resort Atlantic City to real estate investment trust VICI Properties Inc. as a part of the deal.
VICI was born out of Caesars’ Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization in 2015, which split the company in two. VICI already owns an additional 20 Caesars properties, which it leases back to Caesars Entertainment to run casino operations.
Image credit: Ethan Miller / Staff / Getty