Covid Mirage Over for MGM, Reports Strong Q3

Amid a near 150 per cent bounce-back from the fiscal depredations of Covid-19, MGM Resorts International has reported consolidated net revenue of US$2.71 billion (£2bn/€2.34bn) for its third quarter, ending September 30 this year.

The US gaming giant recorded net income of US$1.35 billion (£1bn/€1.17bn) for the quarter, compared to a loss of US$535 million (£396.4m/€462.7m) in the previous Q3.

Concurrently, MGM Resorts has also announced that it now plans to complete the full sell-off of its iconic Mirage Resort in Las Vegas — a move, say industry watchers, that underlines MGM’s growing shift to iGaming and sports betting.

“We’re currently in the early stages of a process to sell the operations of the Mirage,” confirmed MGM CEO Bill Hornbuckle.

No details of potential buyers for the operating licence have yet been released.

As for the physical Mirage buildings, they are still owned by MGM Growth Properties, a real estate investment trust (REIT) set-up and spun-off by MGM in 2016.

MGM Resorts has a controlling stake in the trust–which also owns the Excalibur, Luxor, Mandalay Bay and MGM Grand on the fabled Strip, amongst other casino resorts—but is currently in negotiations to sell the REIT to Vici Properties for a reputed US$17.2 billion (£12.74bn/€14.87bn), including an estimated US$5.7 billion (£4.22bn/€4.92bn) in debt.

In all, MGM’s Vegas resorts generated US$1.38 billion (£1.02bn/€1.19bn) in Q3 revenue, stateside regional operations brought in US$925.1 million (£685.42m/€800.11m) and MGM operations in Macao, China, affected by renewed Covid-19 outbreaks, added a relatively modest $289.1 million (£214.2m/€250m).

Said Hornbuckle: “We kicked off the [third] quarter exceptionally strong, anchored by a great 4th of July holiday, better than pre-pandemic casino spend levels and pent-up demands for the city’s wide-scale entertainment re-launch.

“While the Delta variant impacted our group business during the quarter, we [were] able to offset [this] with leisure and casino customers. With cases on the downswing, we have built momentum into October and the level of demand in the marketplace, especially on the weekends, has simply been incredible.

“I continue to express my sincere pride and gratitude of the tremendous effort of our employees, who are the foundation upon which we built our strategic plan and long-term vision.”

Meantime, in further positive news, MGM Resorts has won the tender to open a US$10 billion (£7.4bn/€8.65bn) gambling resort in Osaka, Japan.

The resort will feature 2,500 hotel rooms, a conference centre and a 3,500-seat theatre to be built on a man-made island in Osaka Bay, with a proposed casino to be opened in the latter half of the decade.

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