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Betfair Looking To Acquire Monmouth

Published: February 24, 2011 9:58 am ET

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"New Jersey has a fantastic horse racing heritage. Betfair and TVG are absolutely committed to having a role. The racing product at Monmouth Park was vastly superior last summer. Similarly, the Meadowlands presents the most eminent harness racing destination in North America."

The above quote, from an article by Bob Jordan on mycentraljersey.com, is from TVG CEO Stephen Burn. TVG, the horse racing network, is owned by Betfair, the giant wagering exchange. According to Burn, Betfair is looking to throw its hat in the ring when the state of New Jersey begins accepting proposals for Monmouth Park.

On January, 31, 2011, the administration of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie announced that in the near future it would be issuing a request for proposal (RFP) for the purchase of Monmouth, which would include assignment of additional off-track wagering operations.

The mycentraljersey.com article explains that the British-based Betfair was behind a successful lobby to bring exchange wagering to New Jersey. The report also indicates that the exchange wagering program is on hold until the betting rules are reviewed by the state attorney general's office.

"We're keen to understanding any opportunities that will increase our presence in New Jersey," Burn was quoted as saying. He went on to explain that his company has been in the state for a number of years, and that racing from New Jersey tracks has been featured by TVG since the late 1990s.

The article quotes New Jersey Assemblyman John Burzichelli, who has sponsored many pro-racing bills, as saying that he "wouldn't be surprised if the RFP was circulated in the next couple of days."

Betfair is not the only entity which has publically acknowledged its desire for Monmouth. The article states that other big players include Morris Bailey, who led a purchase of the Resorts Atlantic City casino for $31.5 million last year; and Jeff Seder, founder and CEO of Blow Horn Equity.

(With files from mycentraljersey.com)

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