MGM plans additional expansion in casino gambling and sports betting

MGM In Partnership Discussions With ‘A Vast Number’ Of Sports Teams

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MGM Resorts International showed a slight increase in revenue during its third-quarter report this week. In a call with investors, the casino giant said it plans to continue partnership talks with professional sports teams across the country.

“We are in discussion with a vast number of teams across the country and in fact around the world,” said chairman and CEO Jim Murren.

His comments were immediately followed by an early-morning announcement that MGM had partnered with the New York Jets:

The multi-year agreement marks the most comprehensive and integrated gaming partnership in the National Football League to date, promoting the global entertainment company’s best in class casino resorts as well as Play MGM’s online gaming platforms and mobile apps to millions of fans.

The company also has league-level partnerships with both the NBA and NHL, the first of their kind in the US.

MGM earnings breakdown

MGM reported a seven percent increase in revenue to nearly $3.03 billion for the quarter, which exceeded Wall Street projections of $2.96 billion. The company did see a 2.4 percent decline in net income to $171.4 million, down from the $175.7 million it reported this time last year.

Other gaming topics during the hour-long call included overseas investments and the August opening of MGM Springfield. Company executives said the new property is “off to a good start.”

According to Murren, MGM is still focused on opening a resort in Japan if and when possible. Grant Bowie, CEO and executive director of MGM China Holdings indicated the company is in position to negotiate an extension of its Macau license.

“Discussions are ongoing with the [Chinese] government and it’s really going to be up to [them] to make that final decision,” Bowie said.

Future of sports betting for MGM

As of now, MGM’s strategy is to take sports betting one state at a time.

Murren indicated that Borgata is performing well in New Jersey. “We’re already doing as much business in Borgata as any of our luxury properties do out here from almost a standing start,” he said.

The CEO also noted the company’s early success in Mississippi. The only state offering sports betting in the south is doing exceptionally brisk business now that football season is reaching its peak.

“We’re working literally on a state-by-state basis with the appropriate state agencies to help them craft the best legislation for the respective states,” Murren said. “I can’t overemphasize how exciting this is going to be over time for the bricks-and-mortar business.”

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MGM in the US online gambling market

From a sports betting perspective, the company is already succeeding in New Jersey. The market is filling in, and online/mobile wagering drives more than half of the total NJ sports betting revenue.

Mississippi has no concrete plans to introduce an off-site mobile component to its industry in the foreseeable future. Legislation does permit limited mobile wagering, but only on casino grounds. Change would require a new law.

In Pennsylvania, MGM has a link to Valley Forge, which is a Boyd Gaming property. Valley Forge has approval to offer online poker, slots and table games. In a complicated web, Boyd has a partnership with partypoker, which also has an alliance with MGM.

Expect to see the partypoker brand developed for PA online poker and possibly an MGM-branded PA online casino platform.

- Nick comes from West Texas where he graduated from Texas Tech University with a degree in psychology. After a five year stint in Chicago where he wrote about local politics and graduated with a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia College Chicago, he moved to Washington, D.C. to write about issues related to gambling policy, sports betting and responsible gaming.
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