Although there has been no official confirmation, it looks as if a Mandovi River casino is about to be bought by the Pride Group. If the deal is finalized, Casino Carnival will be owned by Pride, leaving only two major players, Deltin, and Pride, running the Mandovi River offshore casinos.
When the Goa offshore casinos first started out, there were casinos owned by five different companies. If Casino Carnival, which is currently owned by V M Salgaocar & Bro Pvt Ltd, is bought out by the Pride Group, the competition will have been reduced to two.
When the Deltin group brought in the Horse Shoe, or the Deltin Royale as it is known, it added this casino to the Deltin Caravela, and the Deltin Jaqk. The Pride Group may be looking to balance things out by taking over Casino Carnival, Pride has denied that it is planning the takeover. While some sources say that it is almost a done deal, the Pride Group, which is led by Ashok Kumar Khetrapal, has said that it is only speculation that the group plans on the takeover.
With the denials of a takeover in place, a source said: “Around 25% of the staff on Casino Carnival have resigned. The Salgaocars are now expected to concentrate on running the onshore casino at Miramar.” The unnamed source has also said that the sale price is between Rs 80 and Rs 85 crore.
The last time Casino Carnival was up for sale was about a year and a half ago. The deal had been agreed upon and a token amount of money had already passed hands, along with a party to celebrate the takeover, which had taken palce on the casino vessel. The purchase, however, had been by a consortium of private individuals, and after there were some differences, the deal fell apart.
It still remains to be seen whether the rumored sale of Casino Carnival will go through this time around.