Wynn Resorts Ltd, an operator of casinos in Macau and United States, says the Nevada Gaming Control Board has deemed chief executive Matt Maddox (pictured in a file photo) a fit person – in the language of the regulator “suitable” – to hold office at the gaming company.
Wynn Resorts issued a press release on Wednesday which said the regulator in the U.S. state where the group has its core North American business had in January 2010 found Mr Maddox “suitable as an officer of Wynn Resorts Ltd,” and that he “remains in good standing with the Nevada Gaming Control Board”.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission has still to make public its own report into the suitability of Wynn Resorts as a whole to retain a state gaming licence there for the US$2.6-billion Encore Boston Harbor resort it has been building.
The company’s statement said the Nevada Gaming Control Board offered its approval in writing after an inquiry into the company’s operations and “allegations” against Mr Maddox. The casino group’s announcement did not explain what allegations had been made against Mr Maddox.
Mr Maddox is also chief executive and executive director of the Wynn Resorts subsidiary in Macau, Wynn Macau Ltd.
Wynn Resorts has also expressed interest in running one of the first casinos to be allowed in Japan.
The Wynn Resorts statement quoted Wynn Resorts chairman Phil Satre as expressing “full confidence” in Mr Maddox. The quotes attributed to the chairman added the CEO also had such backing from “the entire board of directors of Wynn Resorts… today, tomorrow and into the future”.
Mr Satre further stated: “Immediately upon taking over as CEO, Matt led the transformation of our company with a new executive team, new policies and procedures, and a new corporate culture – a transformation the Nevada regulators referred to at a hearing as a total ‘paradigm shift’.”
In February, the Nevada Gaming Commission fined Wynn Resorts US$20 million for failing to take appropriate action in response to allegations of sexual misconduct made against Wynn Resorts’ founder Steve Wynn.
Mr Wynn had resigned as group chairman and chief executive last year. Nevada has confirmed he paid millions of U.S. dollars in settlement to one of his accusers, but he nonetheless denies any wrongdoing.
After February’s record fine was handed down by Nevada, Wynn Resorts said that, under the leadership of Mr Maddox, the company had worked to make its workplace safer for employees, and specifically its female staff. Wynn Resorts claims to have “enhanced workplace compliance and prevention of sexual harassment training for all employees, designed and delivered by a third-party expert”.
Additionally, the company had formed a Women’s Leadership Council, and was studying pay and promotions practices to ensure gender equality, as well as offering “diversity, inclusion and unconscious bias training” it said at the time.
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"There’s a huge amount of possibilities out there and in the case of Macau, it seems that some of these issues should be considered or we may lose the epithet of gambling capital of the world"
Macau-based lawyer and senior partner at law firm Rato, Ling, Lei and Cortés