IGT - Acres Gaming Deal Endorsed

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Slot machine maker International Game Technology's $143 million acquisition of gambling systems tech company Acres Gaming Inc. was endorsed Wednesday by the Nevada Gaming Control Board.

The combining of the two companies is "a good thing for IGT, a good thing for Acres, and a good thing for our customers," IGT chief executive officer Tom Baker said as the board voted for the deal. The state Gaming Commission will have final say Oct. 23.

Bud Glisson, chief executive of Las Vegas-based Acres, has said Acres and IGT have worked together on many successful ventures over the years.

Reno-based IGT is the biggest slot maker in the world. Acres Gaming is best known for making systems that can track gamblers' slot machine play and award player bonuses that can be redeemed directly from a machine.

The deal has been challenged by an Acres stockholder who filed suit in Clark County District Court contending Acres failed to adequately value and shop the company to prospective buyers before it agreed to be acquired by IGT.

In other action, the Control Board recommended:

-A manufacturer-distributor license for Slot Tables Inc., headed by veteran southern Nevada resort owner-operator Paul Lowden.

-A nonrestricted, slots-only license for the Comstock Casino in Carson City. David Tate is the general manager. He's also at the Silver Springs and Fallon Nugget casinos and the Bonanza in Fallon.

-John Lambert as general manager at Baldini's Sports Casino in Sparks; Clinton Johnson as general manager at the Crystal Bay Club Casino on Lake Tahoe's northeast shore; and Mackey Potter as general manager at the Silver Club in Sparks.

-Longtime Nevada gambling industry figure and former regulator Richard Bunker as receiver for Silver State Gaming Inc. in Las Vegas. Clark District Judge Gene Porter ordered a receivership at the property, although that order is under appeal.