United States-based casino operator MGM Resorts International on Wednesday said Bill Hornbuckle (pictured in a file photo), the firm’s acting chief executive and president, had been elected by the board as de facto CEO and president, with immediate effect.
MGM Resorts is the parent of Macau licensee MGM China Holdings Ltd. Mr Hornbuckle is currently an executive director and board chairman of MGM China. The latter firm has also recently undergone leadership changes, with its long-standing CEO Grant Bowie retiring, and his role being split between two other executives.
The freshly-confirmed group CEO was chief marketing officer of MGM Resorts from 2009 until 2012. He then served as the group’s president and chief operating officer until earlier this year.
Mr Hornbuckle had been acting group CEO since March, after it had been announced in mid-February that James Murren would step down as chairman and chief executive. The job of chairman subsequently went to board member Paul Salem.
Mr Salem said in a prepared statement that Mr Hornbuckle had “fully earned the opportunity before him”.
Referring to the challenges posed to the casino industry amid the Covid-19 pandemic, the chairman added that Mr Hornbuckle’s “depth of knowledge and steady hand have provided reassurance and confidence to our employees, partners, guests and shareholders during one of the most difficult periods in the history of our company”.
Mr Hornbuckle was quoted as saying in the release: “While we will continue to operate in this new normal for the near term, fundamentally I am incredibly optimistic about the future of our company and our industry.”
MGM Resorts is part of what is currently the sole qualified consortium that can partner the city and prefecture of Osaka in that metropolis’ effort to get a Japan casino licence.
In the Macau market, MGM China faces expiry of its current gaming rights in June 2022, with the possibility of a public retender process associated with that event.
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