120 jobs saved at Ricoh casino

More than 100 jobs have been saved in Coventry after a buyer was found for the city’s Isle of Capri casino.

About 120 workers at the casino were told this week that their jobs were safe after the company was sold to one of the country’s biggest gaming firms.

Grosvenor Casinos – which is owned by the Rank Group Plc – has bought the city’s casino at the Ricoh Arena in a GBP 650,000 deal.

Bosses at Grosvenor have announced plans to invest more than GBP 1.6 million to bring its G Casino brand to Coventry.

The company will be injecting GBP 1 million to refurbish and re-brand the site – which will be the eighth G Casino in its portfolio of 33 UK bases.

Daniel Gidney, chief executive of Arena Coventry Ltd, said: “This is very good news for the Ricoh Arena and for Coventry.

„Rank is a world-renowned leisure and entertainment group with a proven record in the gaming sector and adds to the increasing number of alliances the Ricoh has with global names.”

The G Casino will feature traditional casino games, such as roulette and blackjack as well as a large poker room and extensive electronic gaming facilities.

It will also offer customers an attractive bar, sports lounge and restaurant.

The American-owned Isle of Capri casino opened less than two years ago as part of the GBP 113 million Ricoh Arena.

But in February bosses announced that it could be closing and blamed Government changes in gaming policies for their decision.

The firm said they would be looking for a UK-based operator to take over the company but if no buyer was found the casino would be closed – leaving 120 workers facing the dole queue.

It has been confirmed that the vast majority of workers will be transferred to Grosvenor, with a few being retained by Blue Chip – the parent company.

Phil Urban, managing director of Grosvenor Casinos, said: “I am excited at the prospect of bringing the G Casino to Coventry as part of the superb Ricoh Arena.

„My team is looking forward to working with Arena Coventry Limited – which operates the Ricoh Arena – to contribute to the success of one of the best multi-purpose leisure venues in the country.”

Grosvenor Casinos will take over management of the casino with immediate effect.