Land-based casino news roundup for Nov. 5, 2010

land-based-casino-news-roundupHarrah’s Entertainment Inc. is going public. Again. After taking the company private in 2008, the new plan is to sell 31.3m shares at $15-17 apiece, with an option to share another 4.69m shares. Odd to think that it was only February of this year when CEO Gary Loverman suggested an IPO was 3-5 years away, and would depend on a number of things occurring before then, such as the legalization of online poker. Whatever… Shit happens, right? Oh, and Harrah’s is also changing its name to Caesars Entertainment Corp., because ‘Dithering Inc.’ must have already been taken.

The RMS Titanic has a new Captain. (Ahem.) Excuse us, we meant to say that the Casino Association of New Jersey has a new president. Ex-MTR Gaming Group man Robert Griffin will assume the role on Nov. 15, the same day he takes over as the new head of Trump Entertainment and its three troubled AC casinos. Assuming Rob has time, maybe he can also solve the riddle of cold fusion and have a look at that whole Middle East peace thing…

To welcome Rob to Atlantic City, Moody’s Investors Service has decided to cut AC’s credit rating by three levels and change its outlook on the city to ‘negative.’ Casinos account for 74% of the city’s tax base, and with the gaming books awash with red ink, Moody’s is in no mood to play nice with their ‘hot or not’ distinctions.

Staying on the east coast, Scott Butera is resigning as president and CEO of Las Vegas-based Tropicana Entertainment to take on the same titles at Connecticut’s Foxwoods Resort Casinos, including MGM Grand at Foxwoods.

Out in Vegas, casino execs are claiming that the worst is over, which may come as news to the 15% of residents who are still unemployed. The people backing the $3.9b Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas are definitely hoping the worst is over, as the only resort to debut on the Strip this year is set to open its doors December 15. Curiously, despite having 100k square feet of casino space, the Cosmopolitan has decided not to incorporate a poker room. Do they know something that the folks down the way at the WSOP don’t?