Carl Icahn builds stake in Caesars Entertainment: CNBC

FILE PHOTO: Billionaire activist-investor Carl Icahn gives an interview on FOX Business Network's Neil Cavuto show in New York, U.S. on February 11, 2014. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo

(Reuters) - Billionaire investor Carl Icahn is building a stake in casino operator Caesars Entertainment Corp CZR.O, CNBC reported on Friday, citing sources familiar with the matter.

The company’s shares jumped as much as 11.6 percent in morning trading. The size of Icahn’s stake was not immediately known, according to the CNBC report.

The company whose casinos include the Caesars, Harrah’s and Horseshoe brands, had rejected a merger approach last year by Tilman Fertitta, the billionaire owner of Golden Nugget Casinos.

Caesars Entertainment emerged from bankruptcy in 2017 after failing to cope with some $25 billion in debt. Its long-term debt stood at about $8.8 billion as of Sept. 30.

Up to Thursday’s close, the company’s shares had fallen about 39 percent in the past 12 months.

Caesars and Icahn did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Reporting by Ankit Ajmera in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur and Shounak Dasgupta