Laughlin casino market struggles, as Las Vegas bounces back
6 August 2012
The Laughlin casino market continued to struggle during the second quarter, gaming operator Tropicana Entertainment Inc. says.
Tropicana, investor Carl Icahn’s Las Vegas-based gaming company, said in its second quarter earnings report Friday that net revenue for its three Nevada hotel-casinos fell 1.8 percent on a year-to-year basis to $28.8 million.
Those casinos are the Tropicana and River Palms in Laughlin and the MontBleu in Lake Tahoe.
The Tropicana Las Vegas is owned by different investors and is not part of Tropicana Entertainment.
Tropicana Entertainment’s properties in Laughlin have 2,496 hotel rooms.
Tropicana Entertainment said that during the second quarter, their net revenue declined $1.2 million because of “the continuing poor economic conditions and reduced consumer discretionary spending.”
The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority has reported that while visitation is up this year in Las Vegas and Mesquite, through May it was down 9.1 percent in Laughlin compared to the same period of 2011.
With 895,079 visitors this year through May, visitation to Laughlin is also well off the boom-year pace of 1.36 million people during the first five months of 2007.
The Laughlin market has been hurt during the recession by economic troubles in its feeder markets of Arizona and California, competing Indian casinos in those states and the growth of the hotel room inventory in Las Vegas, which is 97 miles north of Laughlin.
Overall, Tropicana Entertainment said its quarterly results improved thanks to stronger results at its casino in Atlantic City.
The company earned $8.76 million vs. a year-ago loss of $2.7 million, as net revenue grew from $144.9 million to $163.6 million.
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