Palms Las Vegas sold to Stations/RRR

Palms Las Vegas has been sold to Station Casinos.  This marks the latest move by Las Vegas locals casinos to consolidate their competitive positions. There are fewer unlimited gaming licenses held by independent operators in Las Vegas compared to a few weeks ago since Boyd Gaming purchased the Cannery/Eastside Cannery as well as Aliante.  Now that Stations has purchased the Palms, the two local powerhouses are going head to head in all local neighborhoods. There are a couple of locals properties still operating independently such as Rampart which is next door to Suncoast (Boyds), South Point which is out on its own on the south part of Las Vegas Blvd, and the two Arizona Charlie’s properties (one on Decatur & one on Boulder) which are owned by Ichan’s American Casinos.

The Palms purchase is particularly interesting because of its proximity to the strip and strategic location. The Palms has historically marketed to a mix of locals and tourists. Its also right across the street from Gold Coast (Boyds). Stations still owns a large lot that is zoned for a casino resort on Tropicana where a Days Inn now operates and a casino is run by Stations. Investors should wonder if the development of this site is now less likely?  With room rates and visitation to Las Vegas at all time highs, the additional rooms at the Palms (over 700) should provide some firepower against in a fight against the Orleans (Boyds) and Gold Coast (Boyds) nearby.  The Palms, which sits on Flamingo west of the strip might also be complementary to Palace Station (Stations) which is on Sahara to the north. Boyds doesn’t have a property on Sahara either. Maybe Stations has a competitive advantage from a room availability standpoint (leaving Boyds vulnerable to discounting) and also from a marketing perspective (by consolidating marketing planning between the three properties immediately west of the strip (Wild Wild West, Palms, Palace Station).

The Palms purchase is another example of a bullish bet on Las Vegas room rates and visitation. Las Vegas watchers should also be wondering whether Stations will re-position the Palms down-market by targeting value guests like those that are otherwise staying at the Gold Coast. I think the sale of the Palms is also a missed opportunity by Caesars, which is distracted by bankruptcy negotiations.  It certainly would have made sense of the Rio to be sold to an operator who could re-position it towards the locals market.

With a market cap of just over $2 billion, Red Rock Resorts (Stations) is about the same size as Boyd Gaming, but the more than $300 million price tag for the Palms is going to be a large meal for them to swallow. Hopefully rates stay low and valuations stay high for their sake.

Station Casinos parent company buys Palms for $312.5 million

Station Casinos parent company Red Rocks Resort Inc. has escalated the battle for Las Vegas locals casino dominance by acquiring the Palms for $312.5 million. Company officials didn’t take questions after the announcement, but will discuss the deal in detail during its earnings conference call Wednesday.

After IPO, Red Rock Resorts to buy Palms Casino Resort

Red Rock Resorts Inc., the newly public company formerly known as Station Casinos, is enhancing its prominent Las Vegas presence with a $312.5 million deal to buy the Palms Casino Resort.

Station Casinos picks up Palms, near Strip, for $312.5 million

Station Casinos said Tuesday that it is buying the off-Strip Palms resort for $312.5 million, yet another recent example of locals-oriented casino operator expanding in the valley.

Red Rock Resorts closer to IPO

Station Casinos’ corporate name will be Red Rock Resorts after IPO

Nevada gaming regulators signed off Thursday on plans for Station Casinos to become a public company under a new name – Red Rock Resorts – which will be traded on the Nasdaq. Company officials told the Gaming Control Board in a special hearing in Las Vegas that Red Rock Resorts would be a holding company.

Regulators approve Station Casinos’ proposed initial public offering

Nevada regulators today approved Station Casinos’ plan for an initial public offering, allowing the locals gaming giant to move forward with its transition back into a public company. Station, which was taken private in 2007, intends to be publicly traded under the new name Red Rock Resorts Inc.

Fertitta brothers file paperwork to take casino company public, earn $225 million

Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta are ready to take Red Rock Resorts public in an unusual way. Paul Gift has the details. It’s good to be a Fertitta. Not only is the UFC believed to be coming off a record year in terms of revenue, but co-owners Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta are about to take their other majority-owned enterprise public.

Sports Connection Mobile – Station Casinos

Yesterday I tried to sign up for and run the Sports Connection Mobile app from Station Casinos.  I was pretty disappointed to learn that I won’t likely be able to use this app.

I went to Texas Station to sign up for the app.  I was greeted at the window with the question about who my mobile data provider was.  I told the order taker that I’m Canadian and that I don’t use a US mobile data plan.  I was informed that I would likely not be able to use the app.  I wasn’t sure why, so I asked if I could just sign up anyway.  Maybe I could switch over to roaming on the AT&T network.  I’m running an Android device and when I travel in the US, I use the Rogers One app which allows me to make wifi calls and texts.  So I’m not using a mobile data or phone plan when I’m in the states.

So the process to sign up for Sports Connection Mobile starts with filling out a form with all your personal information including your SSN/SIN. I fudged my SIN since I figured they wouldn’t be able to confirm or deny the right number anyway, and it was probably best not to give Stations (who might have to disclose my info to some federal agency for money launder compliance or other wire act compliance?). After I submitted the form to the casino rep at the sports betting window, they disappeared to the back room to enter my info in their system.  Players also need to provide ID and a players card.

After I was signed up, I deposited $200 and was told that this amount would go into my mobile account, which is segregated from your other sports betting account.  Basically, you can’t mix your mobile account cash with your sports betting account cash which you would use to place bets in person at the window.

Now that everything was set up, I went to login, but was blocked out since I was not on a US mobile data network.  The app asked me to turn off wifi and exit a list of programs including the William Hill app I use in Ontario.  Curiously, it didn’t ask me to close the Betfair app.

Since I don’t have a US mobile data plan, I’m not able to access the Sports Connection mobile app from Station Casinos.  This is disappointing since the GPS locator could act as a way to verify my location.  Maybe there are extra security features with a data plan that cannot be confirmed from a wifi connection or GPS?