IGT-Anchor merger gains state support

Dec 24, 2001 7:09 AM

Calling it a “clean, straight-forward and compatible’’ deal, state regulators approved IGT’s purchase of Anchor Gaming.

The deal, which makes IGT Nevada’s largest publicly held company, will create “a more diversified company that can meet the challenges of a changing world,’’ said Bob Faiss, an IGT attorney.

Analysts say the IGT-Anchor combination looks like a win-win proposition. No layoffs are expected and the Reno-based IGT will bolster its position as the world’s No. 1 slot maker.

Anchor, meantime, will continue to specialize as the biggest operator of state video lottery terminals and retains the consulting services of gaming innovator Randy Adams. The Las Vegas firm also runs successful casino operations in Colorado and outside San Diego while maintaining its Nevada slot routes.

“No deal this size can be called simple,’’ noted Gaming Commission Chairman Peter Bernhard. But IGT CEO Tom Baker pledged that the $1.2 billion tax-free, share-for-share exchange would produce an integrated company “as soon as possible.’’