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Howard Stutz

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Wynn delays opening of Macau resort

19 Nov 2015

By Howard Stutz
Wynn Resorts Ltd. said Wednesday it will move the opening of its $4.1 billion Wynn Palace development in Macau back by three months.

In a brief statement, the company said it was notified by its general contractor that the 1,700-room Cotai Strip hotel-casino will not be ready to open by the projected early completion date of March 25.

The revised opening date for the project is now June 25.

The announcement sent shares of Wynn Resorts down as much as 6% before the stock price rallied. Wynn closed at $61.31 on the Nasdaq, down 25 cents or 0.41%.

Wynn Palace is one of three major developments scheduled to open next year in Macau from the three Nevada-based casino operators in the region. Las Vegas Sands Corp. is expected to open the $2.6 billion The Parisian Macao in late 2016 while MGM Resorts International's $3.1 billion MGM Cotai will open at the end of the year.

"While we are surprised by the announcement, given our negative view of the impacts of new supply into the current market climate, we don't think the three-month delay is entirely meaningful from a fundamental perspective," Deutsche Bank gaming analyst Carlo Santarelli told investors.

He said the announcement didn't blame government issues, labor issues, or budget changes for the delay.

"Simply, they have experienced due course construction delays, some of which stem from the level of the expectation for the quality of the finishing work," Santarelli said.

Last month, Wynn Resorts Chairman Steve Wynn criticized the Macau government during his quarterly earnings conference call because the company had not yet been told how many gaming tables it would receive for the casino. The company was seeking 500 tables.

Macau has experienced 17 straight months of declining gaming revenue and the market is down more than 35% through the first 10 months of 2015.

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