‘Passing’ era for Churchill Downs Inc. shareholders

Churchill Downs Inc. graphic showing dividend history.

The shareholder pass to the racetracks of Louisville-based Churchill Downs Inc. is now a thing of the past.

The racing, gaming and electronic games company has announced that its free admission passes for shareholders will cease to exist March 1. The passes date back to the days when Churchill Downs was a collection of racetracks, if not just one racetrack.

The explanation to shareholders notes the pass program’s cost had grown — without saying what that cost is or how much it had grown — as the company diversified beyond racing into casinos and other ventures. The company said it now focuses on shareholder benefits of other kinds — dividends, stock repurchases and share price increases.

“CDI has more than doubled its dividend rate paid to shareholders from $0.50 per common share in 2010 to $1.15 per common share in 2016.  We also recently announced another 15 percent increase which will provide our shareholders of record on Dec. 2, 2016, a dividend rate of $1.32 per common share which will be paid out on Jan. 6, 2017. Additionally, CDI continues to be one of the only dividend-paying regional gaming public companies.”

The announcement also noted record stock prices for the company.

Ebay image of 2016 Churchill Downs Inc. shareholder pass.

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