Nevada OKs Caesars William Hill Buy

The sale of William Hill to Caesars Entertainment was approved last week by Nevada regulators. The company says it plans to sell the international operations of Hill to concentrate in the U.S. business. Caesars CEO Tom Reeg (l.) says his company wanted to “take the wheel.”

The $3.7 billion deal agreed to by Caesars in April to buy the William Hill sports betting business was approved by the Nevada Gaming Commission last week. William Hill has more than 120 sports books in the state and also conducts mobile sports betting. Caesars had previously acquired 20 percent of the company, but Caesars CEO Tom Reeg wanted it all.

“We wanted to sit at the steering wheel ourselves,” Reeg said. “We’re essentially going from a 20 percent to a 100 percent position.”

Caesars operates 54 properties in 16 states, which will all feature William Hill books in the states were sports betting is legal. William Hill operates books in some non-Caesars casinos, and Reeg said the company will not use any Caesars branding in those locations.

As stated back in April, Caesars will sell the international business of William Hill to concentrate on growing the U.S. side. William Hill operates many bookmaking locations in the UK as well as mobile sports betting across Europe. A bidding war could be building for those assets, with 888 Holdings and Betfred interested in making a bid. Analysts expect the international assets could draw as much as $1.65 billion.