MGM muscles in on Atlantic City as it takes control of the Borgata

  • MGM Resorts International looks to continue its casino acquisitions
  • Despite it’s reputation Borgata has seen flagging fortunes recently
  • The casino and hotel complex saw a 30% slump in casino revenue in 2016

MGM Resorts International is showing no signs of letting up in its inexorable acquisition of casino complexes. The conglomerate has now assumed full control of Atlantic City’s Borgata as it seeks to gain a major presence in New Jersey.

So? When are you visiting? #Borgata #theshowthatneverends

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And while the company is best known for its gaming facilities in Las Vegas and, to a lesser extent, Mississippi and Detroit, it now has Atlantic City firmly in its sights.

Due to its financial muscle and wealth of experience, experts are tipping the Borgata’s flagging fortunes to be rapidly revived. The New Jersey casino has been struggling of late and MGM’s arrival on the scene appears to be perfect timing.

Whether it proves to be a marriage made in heaven remains to be seen, but one thing’s for sure: if MGM Resorts International can’t make the Borgata work, no one can.

Revenue rise and fall

On paper, the New Jersey mega casino would appear to be prospering, having posted 2016 gambling revenue surpassing that of any other operator, at $45.82 million. That’s a 3% increase on the previous year, but when the state’s gambling figures as a whole are considered, these stats look less impressive.

Given that New Jersey’s gambling revenue swelled by over 32% in 2016, it’s plain to see that the Borgata has been left behind, with much of the business going to Tropicana, Golden Nugget and a few other new arrivals.

Most concerning of all for the Borgata is the hit it took to its casino revenue which slumped by almost 30% last year. It’s also worth noting that the casino revenue the Borgata took in during 2016 was for both online casino gaming and online poker, whereas its closest competitor, Golden Nugget, doesn’t have an online poker facility.

In other words, once you drill down into the data, the Borgata has been ailing for some time, not least when compared to its own high standards.

Few casino brands are as well known and highly regarded as MGM, which has more than 20 facilities throughout the US, as well as a handful overseas. These include the MGM National Harbor in Maryland, which opened recently to much fanfare and which isn’t so far from New Jersey.

It will take a few months to see whether the new acquisition has helped reverse the Borgata’s flagging fortunes, but industry insiders are optimistic that the move will prove to be a resounding success.

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