DEADWOOD, S.D. (KELO) — The company buying the historic Franklin Hotel and Silverado gambling complex in the heart of Deadwood from Super G Investments now has the necessary South Dakota licenses.
The South Dakota Commission on Gaming in a special teleconference meeting Monday approved operator and retail licenses for SGMSD, LLC and approved Jon Grant Lincoln as key licensee.
Lincoln is chief executive officer for Strategic Gaming Management, a Missoula, Montana-based business. He also is a consultant for ZenSports, a West Hollywood, California-based phone-betting app company that has been expanding.
ZenSports in 2021 exercised its Nevada gaming licenses to operate the Big Wheel Casino in Lovelock, Nevada, and The Book at Baldini’s in Reno, Nevada. That agreement called for Strategic Gaming Management to act as the slot route operator and receive a portion of the slot-machine revenue. SGM was formed in 2009 for the purchase of Baldini’s Casino.
Lincoln and Charlie Skinner, a Las Vegas, Nevada, partner in Strategic Gaming Management and president of Marker Trax, a company that specializes in managing and issuing cashless funds for players at casinos, filed organizational paperwork for SGMSD with the South Dakota Secretary of State office and received approval on January 4, 2023.
Lincoln owns 99% of SGMSD and Skinner 1%, according to an official investigation summary that the South Dakota Commission received.
As a licensee, SGMSD now must submit copies of all proposed gaming contracts to the commission’s executive secretary. South Dakota law states that, “The executive secretary or the commission may approve or deny gaming contracts and require changes in the contracts before participation by the licensee is allowed. The executive secretary or the commission may require a licensee to terminate participation in a gaming contract.”
Among the teleconference participants Monday was Tom Rensch, general manager for the Silverado / Franklin Hotel complex. Super G Investment Corporation formed in 1990, with Gilbert D. Moyle III of Rapid City as president, and opened the Silverado casino. Super G Investment purchased the Franklin Hotel property in 2005.
The commission meeting lasted less than 10 minutes. As the four members prepared to adjourn, Lincoln spoke and praised the commission staff’s handling of the background investigation of the license applicants.
“Everything was first class, professional, really enjoyed the process,” Lincoln said, adding that “sooner rather than later” he wants to meet the commission members on an individual basis.
The commission’s chair, Karen Wagner of Belle Fourche, thanked him. “And,” she added, “welcome.”