Michigan’s commercial casinos posted better-than-expected numbers in the first month of operations since mid-March.
Despite restrictions limiting the casinos to 15 percent capacity, Michigan’s trio of Detroit commercial casinos took in $69.2 million in revenue for August. Those numbers include revenue figures from MGM Grand Detroit, Greektown Casino Hotel, and MotorCity Casino Hotel.
The $69.2 million represents a 42% decrease in year-over-year revenue versus August 2019. Considering the circumstances, however, August revenue numbers should give casino operators, as well as the city of Detroit, optimism about the short-term future of land-based casino operations.
The August revenue numbers didn’t cover a full calendar month, as MotorCity Casino and Greektown Casino reopened Aug. 5, with MGM Grand Detroit following suit on Aug. 7.
The casinos are mandated by Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB) guidelines to only allow 15 percent of normal maximum capacity. Social distancing guidelines result in fewer table games and slots available to customers, while live poker rooms at all three casinos are still shut down.
Poker rooms and other areas of the gaming floor need MGCB approval before casinos can reopen those games to customers.
Detroit’s Casinos Show Resiliency
Other figures from the MGCB show that Michigan’s commercial casinos are down 62% in year-to-date revenue versus 2019. That decline is to be expected, as all three properties were forced to cease operations on March 23.
After four-and-a-half months of closure, commercial casinos finally received authorization to reopen in the first week of August.
Included in those monthly figures is the first month of operations for Detroit’s land-based sportsbooks. Sports betting went live at all three casinos briefly in March, but all three sportsbooks were shut down after just a few days in business.
The August reopening coincided with the return of Major League Baseball and the NBA Playoffs. Overall, the three commercial casino sportsbooks brought in just under $2 million in combined revenue for August. MGM Grand Detroit posted the best numbers of the three, taking in $932,601 in qualified adjusted gross receipts.
Overall revenue from Detroit’s trio of commercial casinos sent $8.3 million in taxes to the city, and $5.6 million in tax revenue to the state.
The MGCB figures for August can be seen here.