Trump offered $400M for Casino

Published October 13, 2004 by OCR Editor

Trump offered $400M for Casino

An online casino recently offered Donald Trump $400 Million for a stake in his gambling company. Trump, the famous development tycoon, has had his hand in the business for a while. Perhaps one of his most well known accomplishments is the Taj Mahal in Atl

Donald Trump runs the Trump Plaza and Trump Marina casinos in Atlantic City. But recently he has fallen into financial difficulty and even as his public persona soars on the wings of "The Apprentice," his reality TV show he has had to consider taking certain steps to improve his situations. To do that he may have to look to the online option.

Casino Fortune approached Trump about replacing DLJ Merchant Banking Partners, whose plans for a bailout of Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts Inc. were cancelled last week. Executive Vice President of the Trump business, Scott Butera, revealed that the company had been contacted by the company but would not say whether the offer was being taken seriously. According to the offer, Trump would have to give up his majority stake and his title as CEO.

Officials at Casino Fortune, considered a pioneer in online gambling, said that they had never spoken to Trump officials about the offer in person, which they said was made in hand-delivered letters over the weekend.

But the offer (which would give the buyer a 31 percent share in Trump Hotels) is legitimate, said Vice President Dennis Rose. "We find the guy so vibrant, such an exciting character. If there's a rescue possible, we'd like to be part of it," he said.

Trump Hotels have a $1.8 billion debt and spend so much money on interest payments it is unable to invest in improving its casino properties, which face stiff competition.

The bidder, which runs eight casinos in the Caribbean, Africa and Europe, has made the offer in an attempt to rack up a land-based casino in the United States to add to its credibility, Rose said.

Joe Weinert, vice president of Spectrum Gaming, an industry expert was skeptical about the nature of the offer. "A lot of these Internet gaming companies go to extraordinary lengths to get publicity, whether it's putting a tattoo on a streaker at the Super Bowl or buying advertising space on Danny Bonaduce's back in celebrity boxing and they're very innovative that way."

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