G&L Statistics Central Region Summer 2013
Ohio, the Buckeye State, is now included in the G&L Central Region; alongside Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, and Iowa. This large market reported a win/loss of $7.98BN in 2012.
What is a Buckeye?
Apparently, a buckeye is a small dark brown nut with a light tan patch that falls from the Buckeye tree and – you guessed it! – looks like the eye of a buck. Some say a buckeye nut brings good luck, and gaming has brought good fortune to Ohio. Casino gaming in Ohio began a year ago in May 2012 with the Horseshoe in Cleveland, followed in the same month by the Hollywood in Toledo. In South Columbus the existing racetrack, Scioto Downs, was upgraded to a racino in June and the Hollywood opened in downtown Columbus in October 2012. These four properties generated $429M (AGR) for seven months of 2012. The fifth casino, the Horseshoe Cincinnati, opened in March 2013 and a second racino, Thistle Down, will open in April 2013 with 1,100 VLT’s. Has all of this activity had an impact on neighboring Indiana, the Hoosier State?
Well, a Hoosier is a name for someone from Indiana but nobody is quite sure why! My family lives in Cumbria, England, so I will repeat the theory that it derives from England settlers from Cumberland who referred to anything unusually large as Hoozer. And gambling is hoozer in Indiana. It generated the highest actual win in the G&L Central Region for 2012. Indiana reported $2.28BN (slightly down in 2011), Missouri $1.76BN (about the same as 2011), Illinois $1.63BN (up in 2011), and Iowa $1.46BN (also up in 2011). The largest decline in Indiana was at the Hollywood Casino (outside of Cincinnati), which was down 9.4% ($40M) in 2011. And this was before any impact from the Horseshoe Cincinnati that opened in March 2013. It will be interesting to track Cincinnati during 2013. The other significant declines were the Ameristar East Chicago by $(11M) and (4.4)% and the Horseshoe Hammond by ($11M) and (2.2)%. These properties are impacted by the competitive landscape in neighboring Illinois, the Land of Lincoln.
Who Was Lincoln?
Everyone knows that President Lincoln was a famous son of Illinois. Actually, Lincoln was born in the blue grass of Kentucky, raised in Indiana as a Hoosier, and finally moved to Illinois when he was 21 (Gambling age!).
Illinois has the largest population in the G&L Central Region and grew the most over 2011, by $160M. This can be mostly attributed to the Des Plaines River near Chicago O’Hare airport, which opened in July 2011. Des Plaines generated 25% of Illinois’ gaming revenue in 2012. In addition to impacting Indiana, the growth of Des Plaines appears to have impacted the Chicago area casinos in Illinois; the Grand Victoria Elgin (down 17%), Harrah’s Joliet (down 5%), and the Hollywood Casino Aurora (down 12%) in the western suburbs of Chicago.
Moving further west, we meet the Mississippi river that delineates Illinois and Iowa. The Jumers Casino & Hotel, in Rock Island, IL (which grew by 2% in 2012), is owned by Delaware North Corporation.
Across the mighty river, the Isle of Capri Casinos, Inc. owns the Isle Casino Hotel Bettendorf (which declined by 2%) and Rhythm City (which grew by 5%). Isle of Capri Casinos, Inc. was founded by Bernie Goldstein who had previously operated the nation’s first riverboat casino, the M/V Diamond Lady, which sailed from Bettendorf, IA, the Hawkeye State on April 1, 1991.
This Iowa state nickname memorializes a leader of the Sac Indian people, Chief Black Hawk. As a side note, the three federally recognized Sac and Fox tribes are the Sac and Fox Tribe of The Mississippi, who own the Meskwaki Bingo Casino Hotel, outside Tama, Iowa; the Sac and Fox Nation, who own two casinos in Oklahoma (Shawnee and Stroud); and the Sac and Fox Nation of Missouri, who own the Sac and Fox Casino in Powhattan, Kansas.
Casinos in Iowa are strategically located near the larger cities such as Des Moines, as riverboats along the Missouri River, and along the western border with Nebraska. Casino gambling is banned in Nebraska and that continues to benefit Iowa. Casino Bluffs, Iowa, only had a population of 62,230 at the 2010 census but the Harrah’s, Horseshoe, and Ameristar casinos generated $434.8M in 2011 and $441.6M in 2012 because of proximity to Omaha, Nebraska, to the west of Iowa.
What Will You Show Me?
To the south of Iowa, we find Missouri the Show Me State. It showed revenues of 1.768BN for 2012 which was slightly down from $1.792BN for 2011. As we have discussed before in this series, it is fascinating to see the strategic placement of casinos by the states. One example is that a Hollywood Casino opened on the Kansas side of the city in February 2012 and, as a result, the casinos on the Missouri side (Ameristar, Argosy, Harrah’s, and Isle of Capri) declined by $65M for 2012 over 2011. A second example is the new Isle Casino Cape Girardeau that opened in October 2012 on the major north-south I55. It is located just south of St Louis and can also draw from Tennessee that does not allow casino gambling.
Oh, and why is Missouri called the Show Me State? No one seems to know! So show me!