Harrah’s Casino Splurge
By dave
Harrah's Entertainment Inc. said on Thursday it will pay $917 million in cash to buy Horseshoe Gaming Holding Corp., operator of three casinos. Las Vegas-based Harrah's, whose shares rose 2 percent, will also assume about $533 million in debt, taking the price to $1.45 billion in a deal that Harrah's said will boost profits immediately.

Horseshoe owns casinos in Hammond, Indiana, near Chicago; Tunica, Mississippi, and Shreveport-Bossier City, Louisiana.

Harrah's Chief Executive Gary Loveman said the company was in talks with the Las Vegas Horseshoe and might buy it, too.

Fulcrum Global Partners analyst Joe Greff also said that with the deal Harrah's would cut its risk in Atlantic City, where the Borgata casino, opened in July, has heightened competition.

Harrah's, which operates 26 gambling halls, said it intends to sell its Harrah's casino in Shreveport, Louisiana, to avoid overexposure in that market.

'The company has successfully won over real gamblers,' said Bank of Americas analyst J. Cogan.

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