State's OTB operator selling Sports Haven in New Haven
Sportech PLC, the British parent company of Sportech Venues, which owns Connecticut’s off-track betting operations, is selling Sports Haven, which houses the New Haven “Winners” location and the company's North American headquarters.
Ted Taylor, president of Sportech Venues, said Wednesday he announced the news to employees Monday, telling them Sportech PLC had agreed to sell the property at 600 Long Wharf Drive to Criterion Group LLC, a New York City-based real estate developer.
“We expect that the sale will be completed in March 2021, at which time Sportech will enter into a six-month lease of the property,” Taylor said. “Between now and the conclusion of the lease period, we will seek to identify alternative locations to fulfill our Connecticut business and corporate HQ needs."
“The proceeds from this sale will create further investment capital for our Connecticut business and will promote the company’s financial position,” he said.
Sportech Venues operates a dozen “Winners” OTB locations around the state, all of which were shuttered for months earlier this year amid the coronavirus outbreak. It did not reopen in New London, allowing its lease of a Eugene O’Neill Drive site to expire. It has urged the state to legalize sports betting, as have the casino-owning Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan tribes and the Connecticut Lottery Corp.
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The company said on Thursday that it would pay full-time operations workers $300, and part-timers $150.
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