Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI) and Exacta Systems, one of the top companies producing a platform for porting slot games over to the historical horse racing (HHR) format, announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which CDI will acquire all outstanding equity interests of Exacta Systems for a total consideration of $250 million in cash.
Subject to certain working capital and other purchase price adjustments, the transaction is set to provide CDI the opportunity to realize synergies related to the company’s recent acquisition of the Colonial Downs Racetrack and Rosie’s Gaming Emporium HHR facilities in Virginia.
Exacta’s HHR platform has for years competed with the platform created by Ainsworth Game Technology in partnership with CDI. Most of the top slot manufacturers utilized the Ainsworth platform to release their games in HHR versions. Ainsworth has been at the center of HHR expansion in Kentucky, where more than 2,000 Ainsworth games—on Ainsworth cabinets—are operating across seven venues.
Ainsworth’s technology to present historical racing data as slot machine results in popular themes led Ainsworth’s competitors to fast-track their own entries into the burgeoning HHR market by partnering with Ainsworth to port their games to HHR on Ainsworth’s platform. Today, companies including IGT, Aristocrat, Light & Wonder and Konami are introducing HHR versions of their most popular slot titles via the Ainsworth technology.
Some other slot suppliers have opted for the Exacta platform to introduce its games to the HHR market. The Exacta Connect platform is used by AGS, Aurify, Bluberi, Everi, Gaming Arts, IGT, Incredible Technologies, Konami, Light & Wonder and Sega Sammy, with many of those slot suppliers opting to partner both with Ainsworth and Exacta.
Exacta’s acquisition by CDI completes the variety of games the operator is able to offer in Kentucky, where Churchill offers thousands of HHR units at its tracks.
The platform developed by Ainsworth and CDI perfected the presentation of that historical information as slot game results. HHR machines carrying popular slot themes have allowed tracks to raise purses and attract the quality of races that already were benefiting tracks in neighboring states where they were permitted to add Class III slots.