In April of 2007, Harrah’s Entertainment Inc. shareholders approved the $17.1 billion sale of Harrah’s to the private equity firms of Apollo Management and Texas Pacific Group. On Monday, January 28th, the sale was officially completed, transforming Harrah’s from a public company to a private business. Although Harrah’s is now a private business, the company will continue to present their quarterly and year-end earnings reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission, because as part of the deal, Apollo Management and Texas Pacific Group agreed to take on $10.7 billion of Harrah’s public debt.
The shareholders of Harrah’s Entertainment Inc. will receive $90 per share, which at the time the $17.1 billion price tag was set, guaranteed a small profit to the shareholders as company shares were selling for a couple dollars less than $90 a share. Gary Loveman, Harrah’s CEO and President, is receiving $94 million and will also be retained to manage the now private company. Loveman will have a position on the board of directors, with eight other people, four from each Apollo Management and Texas Pacific Group.
Harrah’s bought Binion’s Horseshoe in 2004 and with it acquired the rights to the World Series of Poker. While Harrah’s quickly turned around and sold Binion’s, they retained their rights to the World Series of Poker. The WSOP is not expected to be affected by the sale. In fact, there have been plans to further expand the WSOP, giving opportunities for even more profits to be made at the most prestigious series of poker tournaments in the world.