CINCINNATI - Cincinnati’s new casino has awarded more than 75 percent of its contracts for goods and services to companies located in Cincinnati and Ohio.
The operational contracts amount to more than $27 million, according to a news release issued by Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati. They represent products such as uniforms, food and beverages, facilities, furniture and professional services, according to the release.
“A broad range of goods and services are required to operate a casino around-the-clock,” Horseshoe Cincinnati Senior Vice President and General Manager Kevin Kline said in the release. “To maximize local and statewide vendor participation, we established a very transparent and inclusive process to inform area companies about our needs.”
One of the casino’s goals was to ensure meaningful supplier diversity, too. The release reported that 15 percent of the facility’s vendor contracts were awarded to businesses owned by women and minorities or those classified as disabled or disadvantaged business enterprises.
Those businesses include Empire Corporate Transportation based in Fairfield, which is owned by a woman who is also a veteran. The company does all the casino’s transportation. Empire has five hotel shuttle buses at the casino on the weekends and two on weekdays in addition to two house cars at the property at all times, said Mike McKinney, the company’s operations manager.
“This is the biggest contract that we have gotten,” he said. “We have had to hire on 25 more full-time drivers just to handle the contract.”
The company has the contract for two years with a chance to renew each year after that as long as there are no problems, McKinney said.
RCF Group President Carl Satterwhite noted that his company, which is minority-owned, helped with landscaping during the casino's construction phase and also won a contract to supply furniture for ongoing operations.
"There's been no greater example of a holistic inclusion process than what Horseshoe has completed," Satterwhite said. "It's been a successful project on all fronts, and I believe it will continue to show the value of diversity and inclusion."
Kline said in the release that the casino will continue to look for more local and diverse companies to work with going forward.
Other Cincinnati area business providing goods and services to the casino include:
• Cintas Corp., which supplies most of the uniforms worn by casino employees and manages the casino’s onsite wardrobe room
• Oscar Robertson Solutions, a minority-owned company, is supplying copy, printer and fax machines
• Delhi Foods, a woman-owned company, is supplying fresh fruit and vegetables
• Rumpke Recycling provides the casino’s trash containers, recycling services and trash pickup
• Wright Brothers Global Gas, a woman-owned firm, supplies carbon dioxide for fountain soda and bars inside the casino
• Xerve, a minority-owned company that is part of the Foxx family of businesses, provides ongoing facility maintenance.