US casino operators Caesars Entertainment and Eldorado Resorts have announced that the Federal Trade Commission has accepted a proposed consent order, which concludes the FTC’s Hart-Scott-Rodino review of the pending merger. The FTC’s acceptance of the consent order satisfies all required antitrust clearances for the merger.

The completion of the transaction remains subject to the satisfaction of other closing conditions, including receipt of all consents and approvals from the Nevada Gaming Control Board, Nevada Gaming Commission, New Jersey Casino Control Commission, Indiana Gaming Commission and Indiana Horse Racing Commission.

“We are pleased that the FTC’s approval of our planned merger with Eldorado paves the way for securing the remaining consents and approvals from regulators in Indiana, Nevada and New Jersey. All of us at Caesars are committed to completing the merger, which is expected to create the largest US gaming company,” noted Tony Rodio, CEO of Caesars Entertainment.

The $17.3bn cash and stock transaction that is to see Eldorado acquire Caesars to create the largest casino operator in the US, providing access to approximately 60 domestic casino–resorts and gaming facilities across 16 US states.   

Lauding the increased scale and geographic diversification, approximately $500m of synergies are expected to be felt in the first year, affording Eldorado and Caesars shareholders approximately 51 per cent and 49 per cent of the combined company’s outstanding shares, respectively.

Set to utilise the “iconic, global brand” of Caesars, the enlarged entity will be comprised of 11 board members – six of which will join from Eldorado.