LEISURE LETTER (09/11/2014)

Tickers: PNK, MGM, LHO, HLT

EVENTS

  • Sept 11:
    • Macau Legend at Credit Suisse Macau Gaming Day
    • MGM China at Credit Suisse Macau Gaming Day
    • Sand China Ltd at Credit Suisse Macau Gaming Day
  • Sept 12: SNOW F4Q14 11:30 am
  • Sept 16: Trump Plaza closes
  • Sept 17-18: Hedgeye Cruise Pricing Survey mid-Sept

COMPANY NEWS

PNK – in the BofA gaming conference, PNK said it has engaged Skadden Arps law firm and Goldman Sachs to analyze a possible REIT spin-off. 

Takeaway:  As we mentioned before, a tax-free spin is highly unlikely.

 

MGM – The Casino Control Commission voted to let MGM reclaim its 50% ownership of the Borgata. Upon receipt of the required approvals, MGM's interest in Borgata, the approximately $86 million of cash and investments, and the title to certain leased real property in Atlantic City in the trust will be transferred to MGM.  Authority to grant the requisite administrative approvals has been delegated by the Commission to its Chairman, and receipt of the approvals is presently expected to occur in the next 30 days. 

Takeaway:  Decision is not surprising and the one-time trust transaction will boost earnings by 18 cents.

 

LHO – announced it has entered into a definitive contract to sell Hotel Viking in Newport, Rhode Island for $77 million. The Company expects the transaction to close this week. The Company acquired the hotel in June, 1999 for $27 million. In conjunction with the sale of Hotel Viking, the Company is executing a reverse 1031 exchange with Hotel Vitale, which it purchased during April, 2014.

Takeaway:  Improving the quality of the hotel portfolio by selling assets in underperforming markets and tertiary markets.

 

HLT – Hilton Worldwide files 90M share offering for holder Blackstone through Deutsche Bank, Goldman, BofA/ML, and Morgan Stanley

Takeaway:  Huge offering but part of long-term unwind.

INDUSTRY NEWS

Visitation (Macau Business) – Mid-Autumn Festival visitors increased 1.93% YoY to 470,072 visitors

Takeaway: At least visitation isn't declining. 

 

Macau permits (Xinhua) – Mainlander exit-entry Macau permits go digital 

 Takeaway: Quicker visitation process ahead of Golden Week


Revel (WSJ) – Glenn Straub, a real-estate developer, is offering $90 million in cash to acquire the casino and resort through his Polo North Country Club.  Alex Meruelo, whose California-based Meruelo Group last year made a failed attempt to buy the Trump Plaza casino in Atlantic City, and Carl Icahn also made offers.

Takeaway: A meager lifeline for the $2.4bn resort.

 

NY – Gaming Facility Location Board expects to award the four casino licenses sometime in October.  

 

NJ Sports betting (NorthJersey.com) –  Monmouth Park operator Dennis Drazin said Wednesday that he has agreed to a 45-day moratorium on offering sports betting at the Oceanport racetrack, delaying a potential showdown with the National Football League and other sports leagues until next month. 

Takeaway:  Monmouth opened their mouth too soon yesterday

 

Greater Boston Gaming License Update – Wynn and Mohegan have until Friday at 5 pm to respond to various terms and conditions put back to each organization by the MA Gaming Commission.   The Commission will weigh and consider the responses over the weekend and reconvene deliberations on Monday at 11 a.m

Takeaway:  Wynn is leading the race, for now

 

Antigua & Barbuda Seeks Gaming Dispute Resolution – Antigua and Barbuda is seeking US$100 million to settle the long standing dispute over internet gaming with the United States.

MACRO

Hedgeye remains negative on consumer spending and believes in more inflation.  Following  a great call on rising housing prices, the Hedgeye

Macro/Financials team is turning decidedly less positive. 

Takeaway:  We’ve found housing prices to be the single most significant factor in driving gaming revenues over the past 20 years in virtually all gaming markets across the US.


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