NWI casino revenues drop in October

2013-11-08T14:30:00Z 2013-12-09T07:58:04Z NWI casino revenues drop in OctoberBy Keith Benman keith.benman@nwi.com, (219) 933-3326 nwitimes.com

Northwest Indiana casinos' total revenue dropped 1.9 percent in October as compared to October 2012, with the five gaming boats taking in a total of $85.1 million, according to the Indiana Gaming Commission's monthly revenue report.

However, overall revenues for the five boats increased 3.1 percent from the previous month. That fact, along with the small margin of loss in October from the previous year, could point to a stabilization of the Northwest Indiana gaming market as 2013 draws to a close.

"We feel like this is an encouraging sign," said Horseshoe Casino Assistant General Manager Erin Chamberlin on Friday. "Clearly it's not robust growth, but it's moving in the right direction."

Horseshoe Casino in Hammond was the only gaming boat in Northwest Indiana to stake itself to an October gain, with revenues up 2.2 percent at Indiana's highest grossing casino, according to the gaming commission's revenue report.

Chamberlin said Horseshoe continues to increase market share even as the overall Chicagoland gaming market will probably come up short of last year's results.

The largest drop in Northwest Indiana year-over-year in October was at Majestic Star II in Gary, where revenues were down 10 percent. Majestic Star I revenues dropped 0.5 percent. The two boats, both docked at Buffington Harbor and owned by Wayzata Investment Partners, grossed a combined $14.3 million in October, a 4.9 percent drop from the previous year.

Ameristar Casino in East Chicago raked in a total of $16.5 million in October, a drop of 9.5 percent from October 2012.

Blue Chip Casino in Michigan City had total revenue of $13.5 million in October, a 0.7 percent decrease as compared to the year-ago month.

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