The Smart Guys in Everett Saw Steve Wynn's China Strategy from a Mile Off

Friday, February 12, 2016

One of the proverbs lodged in my cranium is, “The judgment of the village is never wrong.”

I buy that.  I also think that units within cities – social clubs, softball leagues, busy restaurants and bars, neighborhoods and even certain street corners -- take on the characteristics of villages in that vital information is exchanged and fresh insights emerge there.

So when I heard in Everett last summer that Steve Wynn had his eye on a large number of Chinese customers for the casino he’s planning on the old Monsanto Chemical site, I paid attention.  Later I wrote a blog post on it. 

Repeating what a friend told me one Saturday afternoon in Everett Square, I wrote on September 14: 
“You watch! Wynn will be doing charter flights from China every other weekend.  He’ll have yachts picking up his most loyal Chinese customers at the Logan Airport dock and whisking them to the casino (on a Mystic-River-front lot, deep inside Boston Harbor).  These high rollers will be dropping Franklins at the tables as soon as they recover from the flight.  And when they’re not betting in the casino or eating at Wynn’s restaurants and shopping at the high-end shops in his luxury hotel, he’ll be sending them in his fleet of limos to the best that Boston offers: restaurants, shows, art galleries, you name it.”

I happened to see on the Internet this morning that Steve Wynn had mentioned Everett during a Wynn Resorts investors call yesterday, and that he’d trumpeted the value to his business of the direct flights that exist between cities in China and Boston.  “Hey, wait a minute,” I thought.  “I heard that months ago.”
I easily found a transcript of that investors call online.  (What can’t you find online?)  Here’s the operative section, from Wynn verbatim:

“I think…the Everett Boston metropolitan area opportunity is enormous.  And we can’t wait to be there.  It’s the first time we’ve ever had a hotel that has nonstop service from every major capital in the world: Hainan Airlines and Cathay Pacific fly nonstop from Beijing, Hong Kong and Shanghai to Boston.  So does every other world capital, nonstop to Boston.  And we are 12 minutes from Logan Airport with our new hotel.  So all of that sort of makes me feel confident and positive about our future prospects.”
There was also a press release to be found, one that had a vanilla headline: “Wynn Resorts, Limited Reports Fourth Quarter and Year End 2015 Results.”  In the fourth quarter of 2015, the release said, “net revenues were $555.7 million, a 27.0% decrease from the $761.2 million generated in the fourth quarter of 2014.”

Charter Contracting Company, one of the nation’s top specialists in complex environmental clean-ups, is hard at work decontaminating the land where the Wynn Everett resort casino will rise.  Construction of the complex will begin as soon as site remediation is done.  If all goes as planned, Wynn Everett will open late in 2018.
By the sound of yesterday’s investors call, that day can’t arrive soon enough.  Who’d have thought it?  Old Everett riding to the rescue of a mogul from Las Vegas.

No comments:

Post a Comment