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Ill Raise You 2.50

Biz BriefsThe two buyout firms seeking to acquire Harrah’s Entertainment, the world’s largest casino company, raised their offer to $15.5 billion after the Harrah’s board rejected the first bid. Apollo Management and Texas Pacific Group reportedly increased their offer for Harrah’s to $83.50 a share from $81 and said they would guarantee Harrah’s 40¢ quarterly dividend through 2007 to entice investors. This acquisition would be the biggest ever in the casino industry, topping the Harrah’s own purchase last year of Caesars Entertainment. Harrah’s operates about 40 casinos, including Bally’s, Caesars, Harrah’s and Showboat in Atlantic City.

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