Monica Howard Douglas, general counsel for the Coca-Cola Company’s North America division, had joined the board of VICI Properties, a gaming-focused real estate investment trust. Douglas is the third woman on the eight-person VICI board.
“Monica’s deep experience and background complements our existing board composition and expands the diverse viewpoints of our board,” VICI Chairman Jim Abrahamson said in a statement.
VICI was created at the time of the 2017 Caesars Entertainment bankruptcy reorganization. It owns 29 gaming facilities whose operations are leased to Caesars, Century Casinos Inc., Hard Rock International, Jack Entertainment and Penn National Gaming.
Douglas has been in her current role with Coca-Cola since January 2018. She previously served as legal director for Coca-Cola in South Africa from 2013 through 2017 and a vice-president of supply chain and consumer affairs for the company for five years, according to CDC Gaming Reports.
She began her career as an attorney at Troutman Sanders law firm in Atlanta in the labor and employment group. She earned her law degree from Stanford Law School and her undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan.
“Monica will be a superb addition to VICI’s board, given her experience in governance and environmental sustainability matters with one of the world’s most admired consumer companies,” Abrahamson said in January.
VICI has been an active participant in casino industry mergers and acquisitions over the past 18 months.
VICI raised more than $2.5 billion in new debt in January with the REIT’s involvement in the merger between Eldorado Resorts and Caesars. VICI said $2 billion will be used to complete several transactions that are part of the $17.3 billion deal. The remaining proceeds will be used to pay off $498.5 million in debt due in 2023.
As part of the merger, three Caesars properties under the Harrah’s brand— in Atlantic City, Laughlin, Nevada and New Orleans—were sold to VICI for a combined $1.8 billion. VICI will lease the operations back to Eldorado for total annual rent of $154 million.
In January, VICI completed an $843.3 million acquisition of Jack Cleveland Casino and Jack Thistledown racetrack casino and the two Ohio properties leased to the former owner, Detroit-based Jack Entertainment