Encore Boston Harbor Gaming Revenue Dips in September, MGM Springfield Posts Second-Worst Month of 2019

Posted on: October 16, 2019, 01:00h. 

Last updated on: October 16, 2019, 10:52h.

Encore Boston Harbor extended its dominance of the Massachusetts casino landscape in September, posting gross gaming revenue of $48.95 million, though that was below the August tally of $52.48 million, according to new data from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC).

Gaming revenue at Encore Boston Harbor dipped a bit in September. But the venue continues cementing itself as New England’s leading casino. (Image: Boston Globe)

The Wynn Resorts property’s September GGR figure was slightly ahead of the $48.57 million generated in July, the integrated resort’s first full month in business. Encore Boston debuted on June 23 and through the end of that month, the venue notched gaming revenue of $16.78 million.

The Bay State is home to three gaming properties – Plainridge Park Casino (PPC), MGM Springfield, and Encore Boston Harbor. Last month, the three venues combined for $80.37 million in turnover, sending $22.86 million in tax receipts to the state.

To date, the Commonwealth has collected approximately $458 million in total taxes and assessments from PPC, MGM, and Encore since the respective openings of each gaming facility,” said the MGC.

PPC, which is operated by Penn National Gaming, is a Category 2, slots-only venue. That property has featured horse racing for over two decades and added gaming machines in 2015. It’s taxed at 49 percent, significantly higher than the 25 percent rate paid to the state by Encore Boston Harbor and MGM Springfield.

Another Rough Month For MGM Springfield

MGM Springfield, that operator’s first New England venue, recently celebrated its first full year in business. But gaming revenue there has consistently disappointed since the property debuted in August 2018.

The casino posted September GGR of $19.88 million, down from $20.96 million in August. September was not only the second-worst month of 2019 for MGM Springfield, trailing only the $19.69 million reported in January, but the second-lowest full month overall for the casino since it launched.

MGM management has owned up to the venue’s struggles, admitting they didn’t anticipate gamblers’ loyalty to Connecticut’s two tribal gaming properties, among other factors.

Las Vegas-based MGM still owns the real estate assets associated with the Massachusetts property, and as the company pares its property holdings, the New England venue could be sold in a sale-leaseback transaction to bolster MGM’s cash-generating efforts.

Clear Leader

In less than three and a half months in the market, Encore Boston Harbor established itself as the undisputed heavyweight of New England casinos. Its September tax tab of $12.23 million was more than PPC’s total GGR and more than double MGM Springfield’s table revenue for the month.

As of the end of September, the Wynn property reported $166.8 million in GGR. Prior forecasts indicated Encore Boston Harbor could post GGR of $800 million in its first year in business, which works out to an average of $66.66 million per month, a figure the venue hasn’t come close to reaching or surpassing.