Purchase offers fail to satisfy creditors of Shelbyville casino

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Indiana Grand Casino owner Indianapolis Downs LLC fielded several offers for its Shelbyville property, but they weren’t high enough to suit the troubled company or its creditors.

Indianapolis Downs told a Delaware bankruptcy judge in a recent motion that “each of the bids received was insufficient to serve as a stalking horse bid either because the level of consideration was too low, or the bid contained certain conditions that were not acceptable …”

So Indianapolis Downs wants to proceed with its recapitalization plan but keep open the option of holding an auction, in case a better offer comes along. The auction bid deadline would be July 20.

Indianapolis Downs, controlled by South Bend businessman Ross Mangano, slid into bankruptcy in April 2011. At the time, it was carrying $545 million in debt. Most of that stemmed from financing a $250 million licensing fee to the state of Indiana in 2007. The licensing fee was imposed by the Legislature in exchange for allowing racetracks to add slot machines and electronic casino games.

Indianapolis Downs fielded three purchase offers, two verbal and one written, early this year, including one from Centaur, which owns Hoosier Park in Anderson. It’s unclear whether Centaur proceeded through the formal bidding process. Vice President and General Counsel John Keeler said he could not comment on the pending bankruptcy case.

Six out of 13 firms that signed non-disclosure agreements submitted first-round bids, Indianapolis Downs said in its motion. From there, the field was narrowed to four firms, which were invited to hear presentations from the casino’s management.

After that, “multiple parties” submitted second-round bids, and one sent a letter of interest, according to the motion.

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