Updated: Caesars completes $4 billion acquisition of sports betting operator William Hill; Joe Asher stepping down Howard Stutz, CDC Gaming Reports · April 22, 2021 at 4:03 pm Caesars Entertainment closed its nearly $4 billion acquisition of sports betting giant William Hill Thursday and reiterated it plans to sell the company’s non-U.S. operations, including its businesses in the United Kingdom, international online divisions, and the retail betting shops. The buyout, originally announced last fall, gives Caesars full ownership of William Hill US, the British company’s American subsidiary. Caesars had already owned 20% of the operator. “We are thrilled to complete the acquisition of William Hill, combining two of the premier operations in the sports betting and iGaming industries under one roof,” Caesars CEO Tom Reeg said in a statement. “We look forward to announcing future sports partnerships that will drive long-term growth.” A spokeswoman for Caesars confirmed that William Hill US CEO Joe Asher stepped down and will not be part of the combined company. Asher joined William Hill US in 2012 the company acquired Las Vegas-based Brandywine Bookmaking, a company Asher created. He launched Brandywine in 2008, which operated under the brand name Lucky’s Race & Sports Books. Combined, Caesars and William Hill operate sports betting in 18 U.S. jurisdictions in, including 13 that offer mobile sports betting. Caesars expects to be operational in 20 U.S. jurisdictions by the end of 2021. Las Vegas-based William Hill US operates more than a dozen branded sportsbooks at Caesars’ properties in Nevada, Iowa, North Carolina, and New Jersey. Most of William Hill’s sportsbooks are not associated with Caesars and the operator has a 29% market share of the U.S sports betting business. Last week, Caesars become one of three official sports betting partners for the National Football League. Caesars said in a statement that William Hill customers will have access to Caesars’ player loyalty program at all of the company’s retail and online properties. Caesars said that combination will allow the company’s customers to utilize a “single-wallet offering of sports betting and online gaming products” across all properties in the future. In addition to the Caesars resorts, William Hill’s Strip presence includes Circus Circus and Sahara. Through the acquisition last summer of rival CG Technologies, William Hill took over sports betting at Venetian, Palazzo, Tropicana, and Cosmopolitan. William Hill US also operates sports betting in downtown Las Vegas at the Strat and Plaza. The company employs more than 1,100 people. Earlier this week, a British court rejected the last remaining challenge by several shareholders opposed to the deal. Gaming regulatory bodies across the U.S. and federal antitrust authorities had signed off on the merger. Shares of Caesars closed at $94.12 on the Nasdaq Thursday, down 16 cents or 0.17%. Howard Stutz is the executive editor of CDC Gaming Reports. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow @howardstutz on Twitter.