The early results are in for four major new casino properties in previously unserved gaming markets, and the numbers are worth reviewing. The biggest revenue producer of the bunch was the Maryland Live! Casino south of Baltimore – $28,481,478 in net win during June – and it didn’t even have a full 30 days of operation (it opened June 6). A slots-only facility, its 3,171 slot machines took in an impressive average of $359.27 per day.
Three casinos are up and running in Ohio – full casinos in Cleveland and Toledo and a racetrack slot casino in Columbus. Horseshoe Casino Cleveland and Hollywood Casino Toledo have 2,083 and 2,000 slots, respectively. As the slightly larger casino, Horseshoe also has 94 gaming tables, while Hollywood has 80. The Scioto Downs Casino has just under 1,800 video lottery terminals.
Cleveland’s casino took in $26,115,771 in adjusted gross revenue during June, its first full month. Of that, $18,523,050 was from slot machines, for an average of $296.42 per machine per day. For the same period, Toledo’s slots produced $17,762,290 in revenue, averaging an almost identical $296.04 per day. Total gaming revenue in Toledo was $20,444,071, meaning its table games weren’t nearly as productive as those in Cleveland. Interestingly, Toledo’s casino had a lower hold, and thus a higher payout, on both slots and tables than its counterpart in Cleveland.
The VLTs at Scioto Downs, which began spinning on June 1, generated $11,075,679 in net revenue during June, for an average of $206.60 per day.
Now for the bigger picture. The Toledo casino was expected to negatively impact Detroit’s three casinos, but the early results don’t really show a hit. June casino revenues were down 1.6 percent, the same percentage decline in April, before the Ohio casinos opened. May revenues were down 1.4 percent.
The Cleveland casino’s closest competitor is Presque Isle Downs in Erie, Pa., about 100 miles to its east. Looking just at slots at the latter facility (table results have been all over the map this year), slot revenues were up from January to March, but down 6.6 percent in April, before the Cleveland property opened. Presque Isle’s slot revenues in May and June were down 10.5 and 9.5 percent, respectively. By comparison, total slot revenues at all other Pennsylvania casinos (excluding the new Valley Forge) increased by 2.4 percent in May and 5.5 percent in June.
In Maryland, there was a clear impact on Maryland Live!’s nearest competitor, Hollywood Casino Perryville, about 52 miles northeast of the new casino. For the first five months of the year, Hollywood’s slot revenue was up significantly – by double digits from January to March, and still strong 5 to 6 percent growth in April and May. But revenues took a dive in June, down 9.8 percent.