Remember last month when Genting Gaming surprised everyone by swooping in, buying the Stardust/Echelon land and announcing plans for the massive Resorts World complex? Well, that may not be the company’s only Las Vegas interest. A reliable Five Hundy mole reports that Genting is deep into negotiations with MGM Resorts to buy Circus Circus.
Earlier this year, Jim Murren, MGM’s CEO and all-around fashion icon, said the company was open to offers for its properties. While the nongaming properties at CityCenter (Crystals, Vdara, Mandarin Oriental) may be most obvious assets on MGM’s sales list, unloading Circus Circus makes some sense. The location is disconnected from MGM’s South Strip landmass and the property has long been the red-headed stepchild of MGM Resorts in Las Vegas—so much so that it isn’t even part of the Mlife loyalty program.
For Genting, buying Circus Circus would give the company an immediate presence on The Strip (vs. waiting three or four years when Resorts World opens) along with a large chunk of land adjacent to the plot it just acquired from Boyd. Between Circus Circus and Resorts World, the company would dominate the family-friendly market. Once the Echelon land is fully developed, Genting could potentially redevelop the neighboring Circus Circus land into something shiny and new.
Update: A second Five Hundy mole tells us Genting officials has indeed been sniffing around Circus Circus (which should be enough to scare them away), and that the deal has already fallen through.
More as it develops…