Maryland Casino Gaming Revenue Decreases in November

Closeup of Person Counting Money With a Casino Background
Maryland’s casinos saw a large revenue drop in the month of November. The decrease comes after the casinos had been making good gains following a statewide shutdown due to the coronavirus pandemic.

In a report by the Maryland Lottery and Gaming, the six Maryland casinos generated a gross gaming revenue (GGR) of $130.3M, an amount which is 8.6% lower than the previous month total of $142.7M. The amount is also $10.4M or 7.4% less than the aggregate revenue posted by the Maryland casinos in November 2019.

Maryland Casino Breakdown

$83.43M of the GGR was derived from Video Lottery Terminals (VLT) while table games contributed $146.94M to the total revenue. Live! Casino and Hotel led the way with a VLT total of nearly $30.9M, beating out the $29.8M of MGM National Harbor. As far as table games are concerned, MGM National Harbor was way above the rest with its $25.5M table games intake.

MGM National Harbor remained the top earning casino during the month of November as it raked in a total of $55.3M or 42.4% of the state’s total GGR. Live!Casino and Hotels came in second with its haul of $45M while Horseshoe Casino in Baltimore was a far third with a monthly revenue of $15.25M. Horseshoe Casino though operated at a lower capacity for the most part of November due to new restrictions enforced in Baltimore.

Horseshoe Heavily Affected

After being allowed to open at 50% capacity for two months, the city of Baltimore tightened the restriction to 25% capacity for restaurants, gyms, retailers, and casinos beginning November 12th due to a surge in COVID-19 cases. Being the only Maryland casino in Baltimore, Horseshoe was badly hit by Mayor Bernard “Jack” Young’s decision.

Horseshoe’s November 2020 GGR is an all-time monthly low for the Caesars Entertainment owned Maryland casino. It’s the latest setback for Horseshoe which has struggled since Caesars won the Baltimore license in 2012. The company has been trying to reverse the Baltimore casino’s fortunes in recent years but to no avail.

Caesars Gets One Year Reprieve For Horseshoe Casino Sale

Casino Roulette Table
The Indiana Gaming Commission has granted Caesars Entertainment more time to sell the Horseshoe Casino in Hammond, Indiana.

On Monday, the IGC unanimously agreed to give Caesars a one-year reprieve to sell the Indiana casino. The commissioners sided with IGC executive director Sarah Tait who opined that selling the Horseshoe Casino right now “presents unique challenges” that include the uncertainty over the gaming expansion in illinois and the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the gaming industry in general.

She mentioned the lease agreement on the property as one of the reasons. The rapid expansion of the Illinois gaming market on the Chicago area of the region. Likewise, Trait mentioned the pandemic causing uncertainty in the gaming market.

Per Tait:

“Granting relief regarding divestiture timing is in the best interest of the state and local community, and will not negatively impact operations at the property.”

Complying With IGC’s Stipulations

The Horseshoe Casino is one of three Indiana casinos that the gaming giant must sell to comply with the IGC’s stipulations for El Dorado’s $17.3B acquisition of Caesars. The sales was directed to prevent an “undue economic concentration of the state’s gaming industry following the merger.

Last month, Caesars announced the sale of Tropicana Evansville to Twin River Worldwide Holdings for $480M. Earlier this month, the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians signed a letter of intent that gives the North Carolina tribal nation a 45-day period to buy Caesars Southern Indiana.

Caesars is retaining Harrah’s Hoosier Park and Indiana Grand. The two racinos are the only properties that are situated less than an hour away from Indianapolis. Aside from that, state legislature has allowed the two tracks to offer table games this year. Caesars is planning to infuse a combined $60M to add more table games to both spots

Biggest Casino in the State

The Horseshoe Casino is the biggest Indiana casino. Located less than a mile from Chicago and the state line of Illinois, it has 2,135 electronic games and 1,105 table positions which are the most by any Indiana casino.

Per the Gaming Commission’s annual report, the Horseshoe Casino generated a revenue of $309.3M during the fiscal year. That amount is $85M more than the income of the second-largest Indiana casino. It also generated $99.8M in taxes which was nearly double the $51.1M paid by the Indiana Grand.

Horseshoe’s $24.9M in local development agreement funding outpaced the next closest Indiana casinos combined. Hotel Lawrenceburg, Tropicana, and Ameristar East Chicago which have a total of $23.1M.