Tropicana Sold to Bally’s Corp. for Deal Worth $308 Million

The Tropicana Las Vegas resort has been sold to Bally’s Corp., the company formerly known as Twin River, for a deal worth $308 million.

Tropicana is currently owned by Gaming and Leisure Properties, Inc. (GLPI), the REIT (real estate investment trust) spin-off of Penn National Gaming.

Here’s the story in human English: Penn needed to unload Trop, sold it to itself, took a year to find a buyer and now Bally’s gets to deal with it.

Tropicana Las Vegas

Trop could become Bally’s, but it can’t be Bally’s while there’s a Bally’s. Long story.

In case you don’t know anything about Bally’s Corp., the company owns 11 casinos across seven states and describes itself as “a leading U.S. omnichannel provider of land-based gaming and interactive entertainment.”

Somebody’s really fluffing up their LinkedIn profile.

As if that didn’t turn you on enough, the official news release about the sale says this, “The transaction is expected to be accretive to Bally’s shareholders long-term and will require no cash outlay from Bally’s at closing. Bally’s and GLPI have agreed to use commercially reasonable efforts to negotiate and enter into definitive documents with respect to these transactions as promptly as practicable in order to fully reflect the contemplated terms.”

Here’s what they mean.

Bally’s Corp. will pay $150 million for Tropicana, but just the above-ground part. GLPI will still own the land underneath.

Since the owner didn’t sell the land, this seems to put to bed speculation the purchase of Trop would be a land play, and that the classic resort could be demolished. Then again, it’s Vegas, where there are no sure things.

Tropicana Shops

This was the plan for Tropicana at one time. Ah, plans.

Apparently, Bally’s wasn’t willing to pony up to purchase Trop outright. The asking price for the building and land (based upon the value of the land) was $384 million.

Bally’s Corp. will have a 50-year lease, with annual rent coming in at a super cheap $10.5 million.

Well, super cheap compared to other Strip casino resorts. We’ve heard Trop made about $20 million in EBIDTA (earnings before interest, depreciation taxes and amortization) pre-COVID.

If Bally’s sounds familiar, that’s because there’s a Bally’s resort in Las Vegas.

Which takes us down the path we recently talked about with an incredibly informative and entertaining blog post about how Bally’s (the resort) is likely to be rebranded as Horseshoe.

While the Bally’s rebrand hasn’t been confirmed, we’re right about everything, so just go with it.

Don’t laugh. Who told you way back in June Bally’s (Twin River) was looking to purchase at Tropicana?

Tropicana sold

Technically, it’s just the one river, but you get the idea.

The sale of Tropicana is part of a bigger deal between Bally’s and GLPI, but it involves casinos that aren’t in Las Vegas, so who really gives a crap?

What does the sale of Tropicana mean to you?

Well, first, you didn’t got to Trop that much, if at all. So, it doesn’t mean anything to you.

To people who like Tropicana, which includes us (despite the fact we don’t go to Trop that much), Bally’s says it is looking forward to “exploring significant redevelopment of the property.” Yeah, so, don’t hold your breath.

The potential for “enhancing the financial profile” of Tropicana isn’t great, so expect little movement on that front once Bally’s takes the reins.

So, here’s another twist. Twin River purchased the Bally’s brand in Oct. 2020. How about Bally’s resort rebrands to Horseshoe, then Tropicana rebrands to Bally’s Las Vegas?

Have our hastily slapped-together Photoshops ever been wrong?

Beyond a rebrand, it’s likely some of the existing partnerships at Trop, forged under Penn’s ownership, will go away.

We’d place a little money on the forgettable Robert Irvine’s Public House being among the contracts to end when the sale to Bally’s is finalized.

We would share which existing brands at Trop are Penn brands, but that would require “legwork” and “effort,” so you’re on your own.

Gird your REITs, because there’s an epic hell-ton more mergers, acquisitions and purchases in the works in Las Vegas.

You know you’ll hear about them here first! Actual results may vary.

6 thoughts on “Tropicana Sold to Bally’s Corp. for Deal Worth $308 Million

  1. Randy

    I remember the tiger in the cage outside of the Trop way back in the day. (Gettin old) . Stayed there once with a room overlooking the Excalibur. Great veiw, again back in the day.

    Reply
  2. Michael Alexakis

    I think you covered this well, its confusing, the Tropicana has a hard ceiling, but it is a serviceable resort that will do well when Las Vegas is filled up with visitors. Back in 1992 or so they remodeled the pool in a huge way and built a big tower, it was a cool place to stay and play, I believe they invented swim up blackjack, they had a vibe with young people, I was young back then, we were excited to stay there for the cool pool. But nowadays the Tropicana is just a regular place, there are many cool pools, it does not stand out anymore. Rebranding it will be a boon to the company that makes the new signage, just changing the name will not make it cool again. I like it, I have had good craps table luck there, I hit my only royal flush there on a progressive machine. I have not been there since In six years, when my older son turned 21 we did a miles long hike looking for a five dollar craps table, the Tropicana did not have one, and the video poker pay tables were deplorable even for a Strip property. It will take a wrecking ball to make this place cool again, and now is likely not the time to try that. I wish them well, my parents back in the very old days used to drop me and my older brother off there to play golf on their long gone golf course, I have a long history there…

    Reply
    1. Marlo

      I hope they do a glass transformation on the facade of the building like they did for 5 Manhattan West. The exterior of Tropicana looks like a hospital or mental institution. They should either keep the Tropicana name or simply rename it Bally’s while the current Bally’s will get renamed Horseshoe.

      Reply
  3. Rich

    Wow – if I were a casino exec, this is the project I would want to be involved with. They have multiple options with what to do with the property. The numbers are great. The location is great. The potential is great. It’s going to be hard to screw this one up, Just keep the Virgin execs away.

    Reply
  4. Paul

    $20 trick at the check in desk gets you a very nice one bedroom suite there.
    I’ve done it at least five times at the Trop works every time.
    Oh and a couple of really good cookies too.

    Reply

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