Clairvest to Partner with ECL Entertainment to Build and Operate A Historical Horse Racing Facility in New Hampshire
Toronto, Ontario (May 1, 2023) – Clairvest Group Inc. (TSX: CVG) (“CVG”) today announced that it, together with Clairvest Equity Partners VI (“CEP VI”, collectively “Clairvest”) and ECL Entertainment, LLC (“ECL”) have acquired licensed gaming operations that will enable them to build the leading gaming operation in Southern New Hampshire. ECL is an experienced gaming operator, which owns and operates multiple historical horse racing (“HHR”) facilities in Kentucky including the Mint at Kentucky Downs. Clairvest and ECL have acquired NHCG, LLC and The River Property & Hospitality Group, LLC, which operate the Lucky Moose Casino and Tavern and The River Casino & Sports Bar, both located in Nashua, New Hampshire (the acquired businesses are collectively “NHCG”).
NHCG was founded in 2006 after charitable gaming was approved in New Hampshire with 32 house-banked table and poker games and standard food and beverage offerings. In June 2021, New Hampshire passed legislation allowing pari-mutuel wagering on HHR at 15 facilities that held a games of chance license. NHCG has one of the two HHR licenses in Nashua and launched HHR in October 2022 with 65 machines.
Clairvest and ECL intend on operating NHCG at its current locations for the time being but are finalizing plans for a large scale permanent HHR facility in Nashua which they hope to open in late 2024.
“We are excited to partner with ECL and their seasoned team on this gaming project. Together with ECL’s deep experience and proven track record of building and operating HHR assets, we believe NHCG will be a successful local market gaming facility and provide both entertainment and immediate economic benefits to the community,” said Michael Wagman, President and Managing Director of Clairvest.
“After several years of building a relationship with Michael, we chose to partner with Clairvest given their depth of experience and positive reputation in the gaming sector. We look forward to working with the Clairvest team over the next few years to build NHCG into one of the most sought-after HHR gaming platforms in the New Hampshire market,” said Marc Falcone, Managing Partner of ECL.
The NHCG investment is Clairvest’s 62nd platform investment and 11th investment in the Clairvest / CEP VI co-investment pool which is capitalized at US$850 million. This transaction represents Clairvest’s 15th investment in the gaming space, building on Clairvest’s 23-year successful track in the gaming industry.