Casino industry news bites for the week of April 28

Apr 28, 2009 5:07 PM
The Insider by Ray Poirier |

Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd. (MPEL) announced it was rebranding its Crown Macau casino to Altira Macau, establishing a new brand name for its Asian projects.

Again in Macau, Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd. said 2008 revenues fell nearly 30% and the company experienced a loss of $1.5 billion. The loss included a major write-down of the company’s gaming license.

Boyd Gaming Corp. (BYD) will discuss its first quarter earnings experience on Wednesday, May 6, at 9 a.m. PDT.

Churchill Downs Inc. (CHDN) has scheduled an earnings conference call for Thursday, May 7, at 6 a.m. PDT.

Analysts at KeyBanc Capital Mkts. have upgraded the shares of Pinnacle Entertainment Inc. (PNK) to "hold" from "underweight."

The Tropicana Hotel/Casino on the Las Vegas Strip has closed 560 hotel rooms to fix problems relating to plumbing fixtures installed nearly 20 years ago.

Privately-held Fontainebleau Las Vegas is suing a consortium of banks for $3 billion after an $800 million loan agreement was terminated.

Magna Entertainment Corp. (MECA), the racetrack operating company that has filed for bankruptcy, named Stephen McCasey as its new chief operating officer.

Mississippi casinos reported $232.9 million in gaming revenue for the month of March. This was about $28 million less than what was reported a year earlier.

In Louisiana, March gaming revenues totaled $218.1 million, down from the previous year’s $229.6 million.

Connecticut lawmakers are expected to pass a smoking ban at the state’s two tribal casinos. The tribes, the Mashantucket Pequots at Foxwoods and the Mohegans at Mohegan Sun, say the ban violates their sovereign entities and they will sue.

Moody’s Investors Service says it believes Green Valley Ranch Resort in Henderson, Nevada, will default before year end on its $760 million debt.

As reported previously, Wynn Resorts Ltd. (WYNN) has named Scott Peterson as its new senior vice president and CFO.

PokerTek Inc. (PTEK) says it has installed two PokerPro dealer-less poker tables at Rhythm City Casino in Davenport, Iowa, a property operated by Isle of Capri Inc. (ISLE).

On the international front, Isle of Capri said it has sold its casino in Coventry, United Kingdom, to The Rank Group Co. for $940,000.

A conference call to report first quarter earnings of Dover Downs Gaming & Entertainment Inc. (DDE) will be held on Thursday, April 30 at 6:30 a.m. PDT.

Scientific Games Corp. (SGMS) will report its quarterly results on Thursday, May 7, at 5:30 a.m. PDT.