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Aztar Authorizes Stock Repurchase Program

12 December 2002

PHOENIX, Arizona – (Press Release) -- Aztar Corporation (NYSE: AZR) announced today that its board of directors has authorized management to make discretionary repurchases of up to 4.0 million shares of its common stock, or approximately 10 percent of the shares of common stock outstanding. Such repurchases, if any, may be made from time to time in the open market or in privately negotiated transactions, depending upon market prices and other business factors.

We are undertaking a share repurchase program because we strongly believe that our stock is trading substantially below its intrinsic value," said Paul E. Rubeli, Aztar chairman of the board and chief executive officer. "Aztar's balance sheet is one of the strongest in the gaming industry, and the repurchase of 10 percent of the company's shares will not impact the timing, scope or financing of our plans for growth. With our marginal borrowing rate under 3.25 percent, the repurchase program will significantly enhance shareholders' returns."

Aztar is a publicly traded company that operates Tropicana Casino and Resort in Atlantic City, New Jersey, Tropicana Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, Ramada Express Hotel and Casino in Laughlin, Nevada, Casino Aztar in Caruthersville, Missouri, and Casino Aztar in Evansville, Indiana.

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