September 2011

A Restructuring Success: The Inn of the Mountain Gods

By Valerie Red-Horse

Valerie Red-Horse

I recently had the pleasure of serving as the financial advisor for the Mescalero Apache Tribe with regard to the exchange offer restructure of its $200 million 12 percent bonds for the Inn of the Mountain Gods, the tribe’s casino resort property. It was a long, much awaited, publicly visible process, as well as one of the first successful win-win restructurings of bond debt in Indian country, with both the bondholders and the tribe coming away extremely satisfied with the results.

The Gaming Life: Frank Neborsky

By Taaren Haak

Taaren Haak

He’s the vice president of slot operations that helped build Mohegan Sun’s floor from the ground up. And with 30-plus years of gaming under his belt, he certainly knows his way around the business. So then why, upon meeting him, do people often say, “Oh, so you’re Frank Neborsky!?”

Where’s the Money? Part 3: Horizontal Innovation in Gaming Machines, Gaming Software and Casino Architecture

By Andrew Cardno and Dr. Ralph Thomas

Andrew Cardno and Dr. Ralph Thomas

In this installment of our "where is the money" series, we’ll give some specific examples of horizontal innovation that are available today and look into the future at what may yet be to come. First we look at horizontal innovation within a vertical.

Renaissance on the Strasses of Henderson and the Proving of FOFI

By David J. Paster

David J. Paster

What an opening! It was an awakening from dormancy that included defiance of the laws of physics when gaming industry legends neared each other at Casino MonteLago’s renaissance on July 26, 2011. The opening festivities and the desert air were hot, and these legends’ enthusiastic support added only marginal exuberance to the at-capacity festivities at hand.

AGEM Index

By N/A


Separating themselves from the broader market, investors pushed the AGEM Index upward to a level not seen in 15 months, as 10 of the 17 publicly traded global gaming suppliers reported a month-over-month increase in their stock valuations during the month of July 2011. Overall, the AGEM Index grew 3.46 points, or 3.1 percent, closing at 114.07 points.

The Status of Gaming in Illinois

By Cory Aronovitz

Cory Aronovitz

Now that the Illinois Supreme Court has ruled that the Video Gaming Act is constitutional and the Illinois Legislature has passed a gaming expansion bill, where does the state actually stand when it comes to gaming? There are a number of things that need to occur before video gambling terminals are turned on.

The Pirates of the Potomac (The Rant)

By Peter E. Mead

Peter E. Mead

This high-speed downhill, uphill and sideways crazy economic rollercoaster ride from hell that began for us all back in 2008 continues today and is wearing me out. It’s mostly the economy getting me down, but not entirely. I’m sick to death of these ridiculous and needless wars. They are stealing our treasures and robbing us of our precious young. The political blame game we hear coming non-stop from Washington is really shallow and pathetic.

Trade Shows: Success is Never Guaranteed

By Lou Hilford

Lou Hilford

Everybody used to exhibit at trade shows—it was the thing to do. In 2006, before the Great Recession or Great Depression II (take your pick), 25,000 trade shows were held in the United States alone. They attracted millions of attendees and generated revenues in excess of $2.6 billion. The gaming industry was no different; in the first three months of 2008, for example, more than 50 conferences and trade shows were held.

European News Round-Up

By James Marrison

James Marrison

In the premiere of this new European gaming column, the Spanish Senate approves a new online gambling act, offshore online gaming companies offering services in the U.K. may face a 15 percent tax increase, and the German draft gaming law comes under fire with the EU again.

What Recovery? Entertainment Value and Post-Recession Customer Spending

By Kevin Parker

Kevin Parker

Do you feel as financially secure as you did five years ago? I sure don’t. Although economists say the recession ended more than two years ago, I’m still worried, and it shows. I don’t spend as freely as I used to, and now I demand greater value for my money. You can bet casino customers are doing the same. In fact, I recently polled a handful of Las Vegas visitors to see if this was true.