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Hard Rock to Buy Turfway Park, JACK Casino

Turfway Park's operations and real estate are set to be sold by JACK Entertainment, along with that organizations namesake casino in downtown Cincinnati.

The Detroit-based casino operator announced the plans on Friday.

The buyer, pending regulatory approval, is Hard Rock International and VICI Properties. The sale price was listed at $780 million.

According to a news release, VICI will simultaneously enter into a favorable triple-net leased fee agreement with Hard Rock International. Hard Rock International will be responsible for the operations at both properties. JACK Cleveland Casino and JACK Thistledown Racino will not be impacted by this transaction.

“We viewed the gaming industry as a catalyst for economic development in our local communities. After ten years, hundreds of millions of dollars of investment developing JACK Cincinnati Casino from the ground up, and establishing a strong customer focused culture, we have successfully positioned JACK Cincinnati Casino for further future success,” said Matt Cullen, Chief Executive Officer of JACK Entertainment. “We are confident that Hard Rock and its world-renowned brand will be a great addition to the Queen City and the right choice to take JACK Cincinnati Casino and Turfway Park to the next level of growth. We chose to sell to Hard Rock, in large part, due to its great culture and quality of its leadership. They are an outstanding operator that JACK Cincinnati Casino and Turfway Park team members will enjoy working with as they continue to deliver excellent service to our guests.”

The transaction, which is expected to be finalized some time in late 2019, requires regulatory approval, both at the federal and state levels.

Subsequent to regulatory approval for the transaction, JACK Entertainment will work with Hard Rock International to ensure a smooth transition for all guests and team members. During the transition, the property will remain open for business as usual.

This story may be updated.

-Staff report