MGM Resorts Calls Chicago ‘Complicated,’ Likely To Pass On Casino Bid

Written By Joe Boozell on April 30, 2021Last Updated on November 9, 2021
mgm chicago casino

According to its chief financial officer Jonathan Halkyard, MGM Resorts International may probably reject the bid for the Chicago game license.

During MGM & rsquo’s first quarter earnings call, when questioned about the possibility, Halkyard said:

& ldquo, Chicago is simply challenging.

The history of Chicago, the duty, and the idea of an integrated resort at scale don’t always go hand in hand. And while I believe they have improved, we & rsquo are not overly keen or focused at this particular point in time there. & rdquo,

The improvement is likely a reference to a decrease in the tax rates in 2020. Still, the tax rates remain high — slots on revenue between $225 million and $1 billion would be taxed at almost 50%.

Additionally, MGM CEO Bill Hornbuckle made it clear that the company had no interest in Chicago, in part because of the complex tax rules.

MGM appeared interested after responding to Chicago & rsquo’s Request for Proposals( RFP ). Therefore, it is unexpected that they chose not to send a request.

The president wants Chicago to have Las Vegas.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfootrecently hinted at which type of applicants she’s hoping to see for the casino license.

Lightfoot declared:

The sky & rsquo is the limit for us because we want to make sure that our RFP is appealing to some of the biggest gaming companies in the world. I don’t want to brand names, but it’s obvious that some of them would make us extremely happy if they applied. & rdquo,

MGM fits the aforementioned information. Lightfoot hopes that more businesses don’t reach the same conclusion as MGM, even though other Las Vegas entertainment behemoths will probably use.

Wynn Resorts appears to be a chance because they have expressed interest in it in the media.

“When a large city of significance decides to consider a gaming resort, we are interested. Chicago fits that profile,” Wynn spokesman Michael Weaver told Crain’s Chicago Business.

Lightfoot criticizes the Illinois Gaming Board’s rhythm

The Illinois Gaming Board (IGB) has taken a long time to assess casino license applications after the 2019 gaming bill allowed for six new casinos in Illinois.

Waukegan, Danville, Rockford, Williamson County, the southern suburbs, and Chicago will be the game areas.

Many organizations submitted applications back in October 2019. Additionally, as of this writing, no certificates have been issued.

The IGB deemed Hard Rock Casino Rockford “preliminarily suitable” for a license in February, but nothing has been finalized.

Evidently, there isn’t a game application for Chicago still. However, Lightfoot has observed the IGB & rsquo’s leisurely pace.

Lightfoot told the Chicago Sun-Times in late April:

& ldquo, we & rsquo must proceed quickly after presenting a proposal to them( IGB ). Once, I don’t want to judge it, but I’m thinking that it needs to move more quickly because of the time it takes the game board to complete its task. & rdquo,

Additionally, BetMGM excluded Illinois sports wagering.

BetMGM is a pending Illinois sports betting applicant, and has been so since September.

Illinois Governor The decision of JB Pritzker & rsquo to resume in-person registration, pending sportsbook operatorAmong the most severely impacted are candidates. BetMGM is included in that group.

It looked like BetMGM would gain market access through Par-A-Dice Casino and immediately become a player. BetMGM still may seek market access with Par-A-Dice, though that route looks less enticing now than it did a few months ago.

Could BetMGM be a candidate to apply for the $20 millionmobile-only license that would trigger online sports betting registration for everyone? While that’s a hefty price tag, BetMGM has deep pockets, so it’s certainly possible.

In any case, BetMGM will eventually enter the Illinois sports gambling business.

However, it doesn’t appear to be in the casino place any time soon. image
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Boozell, Joe

Boozell, Joe has also been a college sports writer for since 2015. His work has also appeared in Bleacher Report, and Growing up, Boozell squared off against both Anthony Davis and Frank Kaminsky in the Chicagoland basketball scene … you can imagine how that went.

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