MGM Resorts sells Circus Circus, Bellagio on Las Vegas Strip

MGM Resorts sells Circus Circus, Bellagio on Las Vegas Strip

Selling up on the Strip! MGM Resorts sells the Bellagio for $4.25 billion and Circus Circus for $825 million as it seeks to move into the legal sports betting market and expand into Japan

  • The Las Vegas-based company said Tuesday it is selling the Circus Circus hotel-casino for $825 million to Treasure Island casino owner Phil Ruffin 
  • MGM Resorts International also sold the Bellagio for $4.25 billion 
  • MGM and the Blackstone investment group are forming a joint venture that is purchasing the Bellagio 
  • It will then lease it back to an MGM subsidiary for $245m annually 
  • MGM Resorts is looking to focus on strengthening its position in the legal sports betting market and its efforts to expand into Japan

MGM Resorts International has announced the sale of two casinos that will significantly alter its portfolio of the Las Vegas Strip and offer up cash.

The Las Vegas-based company said Tuesday it is selling the Circus Circus hotel-casino for $825 million to Treasure Island casino owner Phil Ruffin. The company also sold the Bellagio for $4.25 billion.

MGM and the Blackstone investment group are forming a joint venture that is purchasing the Bellagio and leasing it back to an MGM subsidiary for $245 million annually.

MGM Resorts will get a five per cent ownership stake in the joint venture and about $4.2 billion in cash. Both deals are expected to close by the end of the year.

MGM Resorts International is selling the Circus Circus hotel-casino for $825 million to Treasure Island casino owner Phil Ruffin

MGM Resorts has also sold the Bellagio for $4.25 billion. The world-famous fountains at the hotel are seen above

MGM previously announced the creation of a committee that would look into its real estate to determine how to monetize it. 

The Bellagio transition sees that resort join many other properties on the Strip that are already structured under lease-back deal.

MGM Resorts CEO and Chairman Jim Murren said in a statement that the Circus Circus and Bellagio deals will allow the company to return capital to shareholders and focus on its work to strengthen its position in the legal sports betting market and its efforts to expand into Japan, which recently approved a law allowing up to three casino-resorts to open in the nation.

Donald Trump and Treasure Island casino owner Phil Ruffin are seen above in 2005 in Las Vegas. Ruffin has bought Circus Circus

‘These transactions enhance the company’s strategic and operational flexibility and reinforce its commitment to targeted new growth opportunities, including securing and investing in one of the integrated resort licenses in Japan and becoming an industry leader in sports betting in the U.S,’ Murren said.

Casino magnate Steve Wynn opened the Bellagio in 1998 but MGM took ownership in 2000 when Wynn’s Mirage Resorts merged with MGM.

MGM Resorts CEO and Chairman Jim Murren (seen above in May) said in a statement that the Circus Circus and Bellagio deals will allow the company to return capital to shareholders and focus on its work to strengthen its position in the legal sports betting market and its efforts to expand into Japan

Circus Circus opened in 1968 and MGM purchased it in 2005.

Nevada gaming regulators are currently seeking a ban on Wynn from the state’s casino industry, citing allegations of sexual misconduct that emerged a year ago, a regulatory filling showed.

The Nevada Gaming Control Board lodged a complaint on Monday with the state’s Gaming Commission, saying Wynn was ‘unsuitable to be associated with a gaming enterprise or the gaming industry’.

‘He failed to exercise discretion and sound judgment to prevent incidents, which negatively reflected on the repute of the State of Nevada and acted as a detriment to the development of the gaming industry,’ the filing noted.

The U.S. casino mogul resigned as CEO of his company Wynn Resorts early last year following claims he subjected women co-workers to unwanted advances, becoming one of the most prominent business leaders to quit over sexual misconduct allegations in recent months. He has denied the accusations. 

 

Source: Read Full Article