he company, the largest operator of casinos on the Las Vegas Strip, will probably decide “within the next month” whether to sell three properties in Michigan and Mississippi, and is in a fresh round of bidding, Murren said. Prospective buyers are offering more “now that we’re not as forced a seller,” he said. “Bid valuations are rising.”
MGM Mirage, based in Las Vegas, hired investment bank Morgan Stanley to evaluate bids for its MGM Grand Detroit, the Beau Rivage in Biloxi and the Gold Strike in Tunica. Business in Las Vegas has “clearly bottomed out,” Murren said. “It’s just a matter of how long we’re going to be on the bottom, and that is what we’re debating internally,” Murren said. “The business trends are no longer deteriorating.”
MGM Mirage fell 20 cents to us$6.45 at 4 p.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. The shares have declined 53 % this year.
The company, whose largest shareholder is Kirk Kerkorian, is “not likely” to sell its stake in the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in Atlantic City, New Jersey, which it co-owns with Boyd Gaming Corp. The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement deemed Pansy Ho, daughter of Macau gambling magnate Stanley Ho, to be an unsuitable partner with MGM Mirage in their China joint venture. “It’s a good operation,” Murren said. “We like our position in the state of New Jersey and feel like we are on the right side of this issue.”