Casino News Roundup: Maryland Record, Wynn Resorts, Macau March

MGM National Harbor Maryland Casinos

It was a busy week in the casino world with MGM Resorts International finding its way into the headlines in a couple of different stories. Here’s a look back at the week that was in the casino and gaming world: 

MGM National Harbor Helps Maryland Casinos Set Record

Originally, there was concern when MGM National Harbor moved into the Maryland neighborhood that it would pull business away from other casinos. As it turns out, the state has a greater appetite for gaming than previously believed and that’s led to some record-setting revenues this past month. 

Last week, it was announced that the Maryland casinos set a new record high in terms of revenues in a single month. The six casinos pulled in just over $150 million of revenue in March, which is a 6.3 percent year-over-year rise. March 2017 had been the previous high-water mark at $141.2 million but March 2018 easily surpassed it. 

MGM National Harbor led the way, generating $60.3 million in revenue in March, which was a property-best for a single month. Maryland Live! came in second place, earning a healthy $47 million. 

MGM Considering Wynn Resorts Acquisition?

Sticking with MGM Resorts International, could it be set to expand its portfolio? Rumors have been flying over the past week that MGM Resorts is interested – and possibly in talks – to acquire the embattled Wynn Resorts. As you may recall, Wynn Resorts has been dogged by the scandal of former CEO and owner Steve Wynn, who has since stepped down. Now it’s facing some very tough decisions about whether to rebrand or reposition itself. Media reports suggest that instead of enduring such an arduous process, Wynn Resorts has been engaged in back channel conversations with MGM for an acquisition. It’s not the first time Wynn Resorts has been floated in acquisition discussions as it was in talks with Las Vegas Sands around this time last year. Now it’s rumored that both MGM and Las Vegas Sands smell blood in the water and will try to use Steve Wynn’s public drama as a negotiating chip. 

If MGM were to acquire Wynn, it would gain an even stronger foothold in Las Vegas, where it already owns Mandalay Bay, Aria, Bellagio, Luxor, Excalibur, Delano, Circus Circus, Mirage, The Park (formerly Monte Carlo) and MGM Grand. 

Macau Sees 5% Traffic Decline Over Easter Break But Posts Strong March Numbers

Even though Easter break is not a Chinese holiday, it has historically been a good time for Macau in terms of traffic numbers. However, this year it saw a significant decline as the number of visitors fell by nearly five percent. 

Even so, there isn’t much concern among operators because they still posted very strong numbers in the month of March. The gross gaming revenue for the month of March showed a 22 percent year-over-year gain, which is quite significant. This comes on the heels of an incredibly strong January – posting an astronomical 36 percent year-over-year gain in the month – and a modest 5.7 percent year-over-year growth in February.