MGM National Harbor drives Maryland market growth

Casino Review MGM National Harbor maryland
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The newest casino of Maryland topped $50m in monthly revenue for the third time in June, as the seven-month-old betting house continues to drive growth in the state’s gambling market while crowding out its two biggest competitors.


MGM National Harbor, Maryland’s newest and highest-generating casino, is approximately 10 miles from Washington D.C., giving it an advantage in the summer tourist season when sightseers flock to the US capital city.

After less than a year in operation, the casino holds almost 40 percent of the state’s $130.5bn casino revenue, leaving its five competitors fighting over the scraps.

However, on a year-to-year comparison not including MGM, statewide casino revenue in June 2017 only decreased by $13bn, meaning most of the new-comer’s $50bn repre-sents created, rather than merely transferred, business.

The Maryland market comprises three goliaths – MGM, Maryland Live and Horseshoe Casino Baltimore – and three chump-change outfits (with revenue equal to ten percent of MGM’s on average).

Maryland’s three chump-change casinos – Casino at Ocean Downs, Hollywood Casino Perryville and Rocky Gap Casino resort – have all grown with impunity, enjoying an average growth in revenue of 8 percent since June 2016, while the two goliaths have been submerged by the splash of newcomer MGM, with Maryland Live and Horseshoe Casino Baltimore posting declines in revenue of 22.1 and 9.6 percent respectively.

Last month traffic into National Harbor, the location of newcomer casino MGM, was up 15 percent compared to the same period in 2016, a year with record traffic.

Kent Digby, executive vice-president at Peterson Company, a property developer, said: “MGM certainly creates much more awareness of National Harbor in the region and that is attracting people. It has been a huge catalyst.”

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