Canadian Firms Leave Niagara Casino BidHarry Coulter | 18 Jul 2018
In the latest Canadian gambling news, two of the largest operators in Canada have accepted defeat by US gambling firms in the bidding wars for two popular Niagara Falls casinos.
A Globe and Mail report has revealed that Gateway Casinos & Entertainment Ltd and the Great Canadian Gaming Corporation withdrew their bids for the OLG-owned Fallsview Casino Resort and Casino Niagara after the prices of the two properties became too high for them to comfortably afford.
With the two Canadian bidders out of the race, the remaining bidders for the two Niagara casinos include the likes of Hard Rock Cafe Incorporated, Caesars Entertainment Corporation, and Mohegan Sun Incorporated. Reliable sources have claimed that two of these US operators made aggressive bids that contributed to increases of the establishment’s values.
Loyalty Schemes Attract US Bidders
What made these two Niagara Falls properties attractive to American operators was the fact that they could link them to their international player loyalty programmes. Companies like Caesars and Hard Rock offer programmes that boost traffic at their properties by offering additional rewards, and some news sources have expressed concern that Ontario casinos could lose their VIP players to Vegas because of these schemes.
OLG spokesperson Rui Brum has commented on the matter as the procurement and bidding processes are on going. He noted that OLG abided by local public procurement laws to ensure the integrity of the entire bidding process, assuring the public that everything has remained above board.
Ontario Revenues Set to Soar
Last year, the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation revealed that it would be running a bid for 20-year leases of the two Niagara venues. The bid came as part of a plan to modernise Canadian facilities and boost the revenues the Ontario government was earning from provincial gambling establishments.
It is still not known what terms and conditions the OLG set for the process, except for the fact that the winning bidders may pocket a percentage of the earnings generated from gambling. Revenues from restaurants and hotels will also go directly to operators, according to the province’s regulator.
The OLG reportedly expects Ontario’s annual revenues to soar as soon as the newly selected operator takes over the two Niagara Falls facilities.