This time around, there was more concrete paperwork suggesting a sale was already done. However, now a month has passed with no news. Moreover, once again, Straub denied anyone actually talked to him.
This sale looks increasingly uncertain. The previous potential buyer bought the building next door. Oh, and Straub still does not have a gaming license either.
With that in mind, it is time to start thinking about who could benefit from buying the shuttered casino resort. While there are questions about just how valuable the property is, these people and companies certainly have reason to at least consider the acquisition.
Caesars and MGM
Earlier this year, Caesars and MGM Resorts announced plans to partner together for a large casino resort project. When the companies announced plans, it seemed like the obvious spot for such a property would be the space between Caesars Enertainment’s Harrah’s Atlantic City and MGM’s Borgata.
Both properties are off the Atlantic City Boardwalk. It makes sense to try and build up that marina area of Atlantic City with a third property connecting the two. Additionally, a property between the two properties could make the pedestrian-unfriendly area much more walkable.
However, MGM currently does not have a presence on the Boardwalk, while Caesars does well with the tandem of Ballys and Caesars Atlantic City. Being able to cut down on overhead by not building from scratch makes Revel an option worth at least considering.
Another upside to buying Revel instead of building something new? Keeping a new competitor out of the market and keeping the number of operational casinos down.
Many assume Straub’s long-term goal wth TEN is to flip it. He bought it for a fraction of its original cost in 2015. But with millions a month going into upkeep on the unopen resort, his profit margin just gets smaller and smaller.
Now, if there is a man who knows how to profitably flip a casino property, it is Tropicana owner Carl Icahn. Granted, his recent track record with the Trump Atlantic City casinos was not exactly problem-free.
Nonetheless, Icahn is one who frequently buys and sells casino properties. For example, he was the one who profited off Hard Rock International’s purchase of the Trump Taj Mahal earlier this year. He also sold an unfinished casino highrise in Las Vegas, Nevada for $600 million this year. That is rouhgly four times what he paid for it.
Unlike Straub, Icahn has both casino experience and a gaming license. In other words, if the real king of the casino flips got ahold of Revel, he could operate it until a bidder offering a sweet enough deal comes along, rather than shelling out piles of money on upkeep of a closed piece of property.
Rush Street Gaming
This last candidate is certainly more far-fetched than the other names on our list, but hear us out. Certainly Rush Street Gaming would be undertaking a massive land-based casino if it tried to take over Revel.
There are parts of the plan that might make it worth the risk though. Currently, Rush Street’s SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia already has a foothold ino online casinos in New Jersey, operating under Golden Nugget’s gaming license. It will also have both SugarHouse and Rivers Casino Pittsburgh ready to take advantage of Pennsylvania online gambling when it launches there.
Rivers Casino Schenectady, the company’s latest addition in upstate New York, is underperforming revenue expectations so far, however, it is arguably faring better than the larger and nicer del Lago Casino.
With casino presences in Pennsylvania and New York, the company has the potential to be a major player in the increasingly competitive East Coast casino market. However, with a New Jersey offering, they could improve the company’s position. With a rewards program linking all three states, the company could bring something to the table other companies like Caesars and MGM can’t, which is a presence in all three states.