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Bally’s Chicago Leads January Revenue Surge in Illinois

In January, amidst a 16.0% decline in Illinois gaming revenue, Bally’s Chicago shines with a 9.11% increase, showcasing innovation and diversity in the industry. Explore how the casino's success signals potential for growth and adaptation in the evolving gaming landscape.
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Branimir Ivanov | Senior News Contributor

Updated: Feb 9, 2024

Bally’s Chicago Leads January Revenue Surge in Illinois

In January, Illinois witnessed a mixed bag in its gaming revenue landscape, with a notable standout: Bally’s Chicago. Despite an overall 16.0% monthly decrease in gaming revenue across the state compared to December 2023, Bally’s Chicago emerged as a beacon of success, showcasing a 9.11% increase in monthly revenue. According to data released by the Illinois Gaming Board, the state's 15 casinos collectively generated $118.64 million in revenue from table games and slot machines.

 

Key Points:

  • Bally’s Chicago Leads Revenue Surge: Despite an overall 16.0% decline in Illinois gaming revenue in January, Bally’s Chicago emerged as the standout performer, recording a 9.11% increase in monthly revenue. This achievement underscores the casino's strategic initiatives and growing popularity among patrons.
  • Diverse Workforce and Community Engagement: Bally’s Chicago has prioritized diversity and local employment, with 82% of its workforce comprising minorities, over 50% being women, and 63% hailing from the local community. This commitment not only fosters inclusivity but also strengthens ties with the surrounding community.
  • Potential for Industry Evolution: Amid discussions surrounding the legalization of online casinos in Illinois, Bally’s Chicago's success serves as a beacon of innovation within the state's gaming sector. As the industry continues to evolve, the casino's performance highlights the potential for further growth and adaptation to meet changing consumer demands.

 

Bally’s Chicago, the newest addition to the Illinois casino scene, situated as the sole gaming venue within the city limits, reported significant progress in January. The casino's adjusted gross receipts totaled $9.28 million for the month, marking a notable surge from its inaugural month of operation in September, where it generated $6.7 million. Notably, Bally’s Chicago was the only Illinois casino to demonstrate monthly revenue growth, a feat attributed to various strategic initiatives undertaken by the establishment.

Mark Wong, Vice President and General Manager of Bally’s Chicago, expressed enthusiasm over the casino's performance, highlighting January as their highest revenue month to date. He attributed this success to the increasing popularity of amenities such as free parking and shuttle services, signaling a positive trend in customer engagement. Wong also outlined future plans, including the introduction of valet parking, expanded shuttle services, and the creation of new VIP areas to further enhance customer experience.

Since its inception, Bally’s Chicago has demonstrated consistent growth, with monthly gross gaming revenue climbing from $6.8 million to $10.8 million. Moreover, the casino has prioritized diversity and local employment, with 82% of its 620-strong workforce comprising minorities, over 50% being women, and 63% hailing from the local community.

While Bally’s Chicago celebrates its success, other major players in the Illinois casino landscape experienced declines in January revenue. Rivers Casino, despite maintaining its position as the highest revenue generator, recorded a 14.40% drop from December figures. Similarly, Grand Victoria Casino, Harrah’s Joliet Casino and Hotel, and FHR-Illinois LLC all witnessed double-digit decreases in monthly revenue.

 

“January was our highest Gaming Revenue month to date, and we continue to see strong visitor counts. More customers are taking advantage of our free parking and free shuttle service, which continues to grow in popularity. We look forward to implementing valet parking, introducing more shuttle and bus routes, and creating new VIP areas to meet customer demands.”

 

In terms of admissions, Bally’s Chicago secured the second position statewide for January, following closely behind Rivers Casino. With 88,313 admissions, Bally’s demonstrated strong patronage, reflective of its growing popularity among Illinois residents and visitors.

Looking ahead, discussions around the legalization of online casinos in Illinois have gained traction among lawmakers. With retail casinos and sports betting already established, the prospect of online gaming could further reshape the state's gaming landscape. However, as the industry continues to evolve, Bally’s Chicago stands as a testament to the potential for innovation and success within the Illinois gaming sector.

As Bally’s Chicago gears up for the opening of its permanent location in River West slated for 2026, the casino's January performance serves as a promising indicator of its future trajectory within the vibrant Illinois gaming market.

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