Future Unknown for Steve Wynn’s $18B Casino Empire

by Joanna DeChellis, Contributing Editor | February 13, 2018

Seven trending gaming industry stories that will impact your casino Revenue Strategy.

1. How will Wynn’s resignation impact his casino empire?

Earlier this month, casino mogul Steve Wynn resigned as chairman and chief executive of his company, Wynn Resorts, in response to sexual misconduct allegations spanning decades.

In a statement, Wynn said he was stepping down because “an avalanche of negative publicity” had created an environment “in which a rush to judgment takes precedence over everything else, including the facts.”

Matt Maddox, who has been President of Wynn Resorts since 2013, will take over.

What this will mean for Wynn’s multibillion-dollar hotel and casino empire is largely unknown, but some analysts speculate that the allegations, whether true or false, might be enough of a reason for guests not to stay in Wynn properties and therefore impact revenue.

Full story at Commercial Observer.

2. Fontainebleau LV gets yet another injection

The unfinished Fontainebleau casino-resort on the Las Vegas Strip is scheduled to open under a new name in 2020. The 63-story bluish tower will be transformed into The Drew Las Vegas under a partnership between Marriott International and New York-based real estate firm Witkoff.

Plans for the hulking, bluish building, which has sat unfinished on the Las Vegas Strip since 2009 and became a poster child of the Great Recession, feature a casino and approximately 4,000 rooms and suites, home to the Strip's first JW Marriott.

The tower on its current site near the Circus Circus and SLS hotel-casinos has been dormant since privately held Fontainebleau Resorts LLC stopped work on the $2.9 project, which was 70% finished when the recession’s effects took toll.

Full story at Las Vegas Sun.

3. How many casinos—land-based and virtual—is too many for Atlantic City?

With two more land-based casinos set to open in the not-too-distant future—Hard Rock and Ocean Resort Casino—Atlantic City is facing two big concerns: Will there be enough workers to fill all the open positions and can all nine land-based casinos earn enough revenue to stay viable? 

To further complicated things, the two new operators have applied for internet gaming licenses.

Full story at NJ Gamling Sites.

4. Italy Sets Online Casino Revenue Record

Italy’s regulated online gambling market has posted double-digit sports betting gains and set a new online casino record. Figures compiled by Italian gaming news agency Agimeg show total land-based and online sports betting revenue up 15.5% year-on-year with the online portion of that total up 27.5%.

Full story at CalvinAyre.com.

5. Political Pressures Force South Korea’s Kangwon Land to Cut Hours

Political pressures from the South Korean government have forced Kangwon Land Inc.—the operator of South Korea’s only casino resort—to slim its daily operating hours from 20 per day to eighteen.

Brokerage JP Morgan Securities (Asia Pacific) Ltd said in a January note that the changes in opening hours of the casino “should have some direct [revenue] impact (up to 10 percent, if we simply assume Kangwon Land’s revenue is evenly split during operating hours).”

Full Story at GGRAsia.

6. NY Gaming Revenues Rise Despite Casino Cannibalization

When Rivers Casino & Resort opened last February, its closest competitor—Saratoga Casino Hotel—saw a decline in revenue. Even so, Rivers is falling short of revenue projections. Ditto for Del Lago Resort Casino, which opened just a week earlier than Rivers. 

"This trend, where newcomers are stealing share from incumbents, is consistent with what has been occurring throughout the U.S. gaming markets, particularly in the Northeastern portion of the U.S.," says a report by Moody's Investors Services. "We expect this to continue in the eastern part of upstate New York, where another large casino, Resorts World Catskills, is scheduled to open."

Full story at The Daily Gazette.

7. NJ Accepting Sports Betting Applications from Foreign Operators

The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement is accepting license applications despite still awaiting a ruling from the US Supreme Court on whether the state can legally regulate sports betting.

The decision from the Supremes could come as soon as March 5th, but this action by the state is a measure of NJ’s confidence of success.

Full story at Casino.org.

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Joanna DeChellis, Contributing Editor

Joanna joined Duetto in May 2015 as a Contributing Editor with more than a decade of writing, editing and graphic design experience for both print and online trade publications. She is passionate about driving content innovation through blogs, e-newsletter and social channels.

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