Rational Group, parent company of PokerStars, has officially announced an agreement to purchase of The Atlantic Club Casino Hotel located on the Atlantic City Boardwalk.
Eric Hollreiser, Rational Group head of corporate communications, in a statement sent to pokerfuse, indicated that the deal is contingent upon “the grant of an Interim Casino Authorization by the relevant New Jersey authorities.”
According to a report by Donald Wittkowski of The Press of Atlantic City, the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement “has up to 90 days to conduct its investigation and file a report with the Casino Control Commission.” The commission then has up to 30 days to conduct the hearing and make a final decision.
The Atlantic Club acquisition will “secure up to 2,000 jobs and maintain the economic benefits the casino brings to New Jersey,” pokerfuse was told. During the interim period, the casino “will operate as normal under current management, who will be retained following completion of the acquisition.”
News that the online poker giant was in “advanced talks” to acquire the troubled casino property emerged last month just after a New Jersey Assembly Committee resurrected a bill to authorize online gambling in the state.
The bill has since eventually passed both arms of the New Jersey legislature and is currently awaiting Governor Christie’s signature.
The Atlantic Club Casino, once the pride of casino mogul Steve Wynn, was built in 1980, just four years after the legalization of gambling in Atlantic City. It quickly established itself as the boardwalk’s premiere casino.
But the property fell on hard times through the course of several ownership changes. In 2012, the casino assumed its current name and focused its efforts on attracting locals.
A physical presence in New Jersey is just the latest of such kind for online market leader PokerStars.