Trump Entertainment Petitions to Place the Trump Casino to its Bankruptcy Filing

On May 14th, 2009, the agreement to sell the Trump Marina Casino in Atlantic City, which has struggled for months because of the financial crisis, is nearly dead. Trump Entertainment Resorts Incorporated, the owner of Trump Marina, has petitioned Lazard Asset Management LLC, to put the troubled casino as part of its bankruptcy filing on February 17th, 2009.

The decision has Coastal Development LLC of New York, a potential buyer, complaining as the May 26th, 2009 deadline to close the agreement approaches. Company spokesperson Charlie Leonard said that Coastal Marina,(an affiliate of Coastal Development) is troubled by reports that Trump may be actively engage in supporting the sale of Trump Marina Hotel and Casino to other potential casino buyers in break of its exclusive agreement to sell the property to Coastal Development.

Trump officials said that Coastal has not proceeded on the purchase. The chief executive officer of Trump Entertainment, Mark Juliano said that Lazard was advertising the three Trump casino facilities-Trump Taj Mahal, Trump Plaza and Trump Marina. He stated that Lazard was the organization’s financial adviser and that it was only doing its job in advertising the assets of the company around. Juliano said that if another group indicated its interest in acquiring the whole group, then it would have to follow the contractual agreement that Trump Entertainment made with Coastal on May 29th, 2008.

Under the agreement, Coastal plans to buy and change the Trump Marina into themed casino. But the agreement has been affected with problems as the organization and credit markets dropped last year.
The Marina sale was changed last fall, scaling the cost to $270 million from the first offer of $316 million. A deadline to close the agreement in October was changed to May 26th.

Juliano said that Coastal have not asked for another extension on the deal. Charles A. Stanziale Jr., the lawyer representing Trump Entertainment in its bankruptcy plea, said that Coastal had not notified him for several weeks. There are other signs the
agreement is in hot water. The state Casino Control Commission said that Coastal does not possess interim casino authorization, which is needed in buying a casino property in New Jersey.