Bet On It: Ohio Entities Seek Piece Of Potential Sports Betting Pie

The company noted that results for Q1 of 2020 were impacted by state-mandated closures of all of the company's properties nationwide during the last several weeks of March 2020. Also, the company's results were impacted by $171.1M in non-cash, pretax intangible asset impairment charges.

Keith Smith, president and CEO of Boyd Gaming, said: "This was an exceptional quarter for our company, as we achieved the strongest EBITDAR and margin performances in our history. As economic conditions improve and COVID vaccinations continue to roll out, we are seeing increased visitation and growing spend-per-visit across every customer segment. Our disciplined operating strategy is producing strong flowthrough on revenue gains, driving significant EBITDAR growth and enhanced margins. We are also making excellent progress on our strategic growth initiatives, including launching our first Stardust-branded online casinos in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, and commencing construction on the Wilton Rancheria Tribe's resort near Sacramento, California. Our strong performance in the first quarter reflects our more focused operating strategy, and the dedication and hard work of every Boyd Gaming team member."

POTENTIAL SPORTS BETTING REVENUE ENTICES OHIO

 Fox 8 WJW in Cleveland reported that legalized sports betting could be coming to Ohio with legislation potentially just a matter of days away. Indiana, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Michigan, which all share a border with Ohio, have all cleared legislative hurdles to launch sports betting. Reportedly, past bills in Ohio have stalled in the state legislature due to dispute over the regulatory body: the Ohio Lottery Commission or the Ohio Casino Control Commission. Since those disagreements, weeks of hearings before the Select Committee on Gaming have set the foundation for drafting new legislation.

“What we think is most important is bringing that current market into Ohio under a legal umbrella and not creating that need to go to another state or find another outlet,” JACK Entertainment senior VP of Government Affairs Dan Reinhard told Fox 8. Cleveland’s pro sports teams have weighed in on potential legislation and made it clear that they would want a piece of the profits. Just last week, those teams issued a joint statement calling for legalization by the end of June. additionally, The Ohio Fair Gaming Coalition has argued that businesses like bars, bowling centers and convenience stores should be allowed to offer sports betting as well. Lawmakers said if passed, legislation would mark a major expansion of gaming, beyond the action on the sports field.

ANALYST COMMENTARY

Jefferies analyst David Katz raised the firm's price target on MGM Resorts to $53 from $50 and reiterated a Buy rating on the shares following what he calls the company's "overall positive" quarterly report. Recovery is accelerating in Las Vegas and MGM is seeing better than expected margins across domestic markets, while the timing of recovery in Macau and further redemption of MGM Growth (MGP) units remain prospective catalysts, Katz said.

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