Apollo Funds Completes Acquisition of Great Canadian Gaming

Great Canadian Gaming Corporation has announced in a press release that its acquisition by an affiliate of funds managed by Apollo Global Management has been completed as of September 22.

According to the previously announced terms of the deal, Raptor Acquisition Corp., an affiliate of funds managed by affiliates of Apollo, will acquire all the issued and outstanding common shares of the company at a price of $45 per share.

Gaming executive Anthony “Tony” Rodio has been named Chief Executive Officer of Great Canadian effective immediately. Rodio, who will lead the company from its headquarters in Toronto, will also join the Board of Directors.

Rodio has nearly 40 years’ experience in the gaming industry and was most recently CEO of Caesars Entertainment Corporation, where he led the casino and entertainment company from April 2019 through its acquisition by Eldorado Resorts in July 2020. Prior to that, he had served as CEO of Affinity Gaming as well as President and CEO of Tropicana Entertainment, and had also held senior roles at Hollywood Casino and Harrah’s Entertainment.

“Tony is one of the industry’s most accomplished executives, and we are confident that his experience leading businesses through transformative periods of innovation and growth will help to take Great Canadian to new heights,” said Alex van Hoek, Apollo Partner and Chairman of the Board of Great Canadian. “We are excited to have him at the helm and to support Great Canadian as the company continues to prioritize and enhance the experience of the guests, team members and communities they serve.”

“Great Canadian is an incredible gaming and entertainment franchise and I’m excited to lead the company as we continue to safely welcome back team members and guests across the country,” said Rodio. “Together with Apollo and my management team, we see tremendous opportunity to build on Great Canadian’s leading market position, improving the guest experience and entering new channels for growth, with a continuous focus on the importance of our relationships with our Crown agencies and other key stakeholders.”

Terrance Doyle, who served as Great Canadian’s interim CEO, successfully leading the company through the COVID-19 shut down period and reopenings, will assume the position of National President of Business Development, reporting directly to the board of directors. Doyle will assist the board and management on transition and business development initiatives across the company, including the completion of the GTA development.

About 79 per cent of Great Canadian shareholders had voted in favour of the deal on Dec. 23 after the investment fund sweetened its earlier offer by more than 15 per cent.

The takeover had received all regulatory approvals earlier this month.

As a result of the completion of the merger, shares of Great Canadian’s common stock no longer trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

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