Las Vegas-based casino operator MGM Resorts International announced on Tuesday that it will pay US$362.4 million to purchase 10 million shares of its common stock from Tracinda Corp. The casino operator will pay US$36.24 per share, a 1.5-percent discount to the market closing price on March 9, the firm said in a press release.
Following the transaction, Tracinda – the fund managing the capital accumulated by the late entrepreneur Kirk Kerkorian – will own approximately 27.2 million shares, or 4.8 percent, of MGM Resorts’ outstanding common stock.
MGM Resorts is the parent company of Macau-based casino operator MGM China Holdings Ltd.
“With our larger-scale development projects soon coming to completion, [this] announcement underscores our confidence in the company’s meaningful cash flow trajectory and commitment to a balanced capital allocation strategy,” said James Murren, chairman and chief executive of MGM Resorts, in a prepared statement included in the press release.
“This strategy includes prudently investing in attractive growth opportunities and returning excess capital to shareholders while maintaining a strong credit profile, which we believe will maximise shareholder value,” Mr Murren added.
MGM Resorts stated that the repurchase of 10 million shares currently held by Tracinda is expected to occur on Thursday. The deal will be conducted under the terms of a US$1.0-billion stock repurchase programme, leaving a balance of US$310.1 million still available for share buy-backs, said the casino firm.
In 2015, Tracinda had the largest single holding in MGM Resorts – a 16.19-percent stake – but Mr Kerkorian gave orders in his will for the fund to sell the entire stake in the Las Vegas-based casino and hotel operator.
Last September, MGM Resorts said it would pay US$327.5 million to purchase 10 million shares of its common stock from Tracinda. The fund additionally sold part of its stake in the casino operator to investment bank UBS AG.
In 2016, Pansy Ho Chiu King – a major shareholder and executive director in MGM China – acquired 4 million shares of MGM Resorts stock at US$25.00 per share from Tracinda. Following the completion of that deal, Ms Ho was said to hold a stake of approximately 4.8 percent in MGM Resorts.
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”We are filled with gratitude and excitement as we approach our opening this June and hope to play a role in Las Vegas’s rebound after what has been an incredibly challenging year”
President of Resorts World Las Vegas