Posted: September 23, 2022, 5:26 am.
Last updated: September 23, 2022, 05:37 AM.
Maverick Gaming has sold its Macau Casino in Lakewood, Washington, for $22.1 million, according to county records. The buyer was Chicago-based real estate investment firm Oak Street Real Estate Capital. The transaction was registered on September 20, but took place on September 2.
The Macau is a 10,747 square foot property on 2.8 acres located at 9811 S. Tacoma Way. Maverick has more than tripled his money for the deal, having bought the casino for $6 million in 2019.
Maverick — headquartered in Kirkland, Washington — currently operates 18 card rooms in Washington state, in addition to 10 in Northern Nevada and four in Colorado. It was founded in 2017 by Eric Persson, former Global Senior Vice President of Slots at Las Vegas Sands, and Justin Beltram, former Vice President of Slots at Bellagio and Marina Bay Sands.
Maverick has been embroiled in a legal battle over sports betting in his home state since it filed a federal lawsuit in January. That move challenged a so-called monopoly on sports betting held there by local casino operators. The lawsuit was temporarily halted in March after Maverick and Washington requested that the state be dropped from the lawsuit, making the matter exclusively federal.
Oak Street Real Estate, founded in 2009 by Mark Zahr, specialized in sale-leasebacks. It acquires real estate from struggling retailers and then leases it to them. According to Reuters, it has made such deals with Bed Bath & Beyond and Big Lots, bidding $1.5-2 billion last month for an undisclosed number of Kohl’s Corp.’s 1,100 department stores. to acquire.
Oak Street was bought last year by Blue Owl Capital Inc. in a deal estimated at: Bloomberg News be worth $1.6 billion.
Hot water under the bridge
Maverick acquired the Macau after the previous owners lost their gambling licenses following a three-year investigation into alleged loans and money laundering by the Washington State Gambling Commission.
The Tukwila Commission and Police Department began their investigation in 2016 after complaints were received about illegal activity at Lakewood and Tukwila’s properties at the Macau Casino. According to a statement from the commission, an unnamed 45-year-old female employee regularly brought large bags of $20 bills into the casinos. She allegedly gave the money to suspected co-conspirators to buy into games.
“They would play for a short time before paying out $100 bills,” the committee added. “The suspect also lent cash and chips to casino visitors and charged exorbitant interest rates on the loans.”
The previous owners agreed to reimburse the commission $1.25 million to cover the costs of the investigation, Casino.org reported at the time. The scheme led to the alleged money laundering of $1.5 million through the casino.