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Isle of Capri CEO speaks at annual Magnet luncheon

Sunday, January 9, 2011

By Melissa Miller

Southeast Missourian

Isle of Capri Corp. CEO James B. Perry shared his vision for Cape Girardeau's future as local business leaders celebrated a year of economic development efforts Friday during Cape Area Magnet's annual luncheon.

James B. Perry, Chairman and C.E.O. of Isle of Capri Casinos, Inc., speaks Friday, January 7, 2010 during Cape Area Magnets luncheon at the Cape Girardeau Career and Technology Center.
(Laura Simon) [Order this photo]
When Isle examined potential casino sites, the company wanted to make the whole area where it was located a regional destination, Perry said.

"What made this project successful is our shared vision. That makes Cape Girardeau a place where we want to do business," Perry said.

Perry oversees Isle's 15 casino properties in six states. He previously worked as an executive with Trump Entertainment Resorts Inc. and Argosy Gaming Co.

"Customers come to a riverboat for about three hours. Our goal is to make their visit to downtown Cape a six-hour visit," he said.

Isle's $125 million casino development plan, under review by city officials, includes a second phase to construct a hotel in the future.

"The key to building a hotel is transforming a three-hour experience into a six-hour experience because once we do, it becomes a place to come for a couple of days," Perry said. "We will start to build an entertainment district down there that will be the envy from St. Louis to Memphis and from Branson to wherever it is in the east. ... I guess it's Louisville."

Perry complimented Mayor Harry Rediger for understanding to Isle's vision for its casino here.

"I have built these projects now for 30 years," Perry said. "This project happened because he protected your interests and understood what we needed to get this project done."

Whether in New Jersey, Nevada or Missouri, Perry said, five things are key to the success of a casino facility -- cleanliness; great products, whether it's games or food; friendly employees; parking; and safety.

"While those are what make our casino successful they are also what is going to make downtown Cape successful," Perry said.

It's important that downtown Cape Girardeau be clean, that there are products for sale there that people want, that the employees are friendly, there is adequate parking and that people feel safe there, he said.

"As this happens, those businesses will continue to blossom and we'll continue to create that six-hour experience in Cape," he said

The shared vision for downtown revitalization that Isle and the city have will also help attract more retirees to Cape Girareau, Perry said.

"Most of our customers are over 45, and the majority of them are retired with annual incomes over $75,000 a year. Those are the kind of people that can be attracted to Cape who will spend money not only in our casino but throughout the community," Perry said.

Along with bringing the largest capital investment by a private company in the city's history, Isle of Capri's new casino is expected to create 450 jobs.

"It's been very interesting year with a lot of ups and a lot of downs, but overall more ups," said Mitch Robinson, executive director of Cape Area Magnet.

While the national economy is still shaky, Robinson said he thinks 2011 will be a good year locally.

"We are very close to another announcement on a major manufacturer. We are seeing a solid increase in retail activity," he said.

Real estate agents from St. Louis and outside the region are starting to look again for opportunities and are considering Cape Girardeau.

"Relationships are being built with these folks who drive the early development of these sites," Robinson said.

In addition to working with Isle of Capri, Magnet assisted with a $4.6 million expansion at Spartech creating 12 new jobs; and with Renewable Resources a new business to recycle roofing, dry wall and other products that will help both the economy and environment, Robinson said.

Missouri Economic Development director David Kerr also spoke during the luncheon, addressing the need for a statewide strategic plan for economic development.

Kerr highlighted seven industries that would help drive Missouri's economy forward: advanced manufacturing, energy solutions, biosciences, health sciences, information technology, financial and professional services, and transportation logistics.



Pertinent address:

1267 N. Mount Auburn Road, Cape Girardeau, MO

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Oh come on "click here" everyone nows that the DRURYS will be building a hotel downtown when that casino is finished. Wake up what world are you living in?

-- Posted by Jax12 on Fri, Jan 7, 2011, at 4:25 PM

Gambling is the root cause of :::

'''My lawyer in Columbia Mo wants me to give my wife 35,000 $ out of [maybe 50,000$ left of my retirement], she has """ GAMBLED"" away about $ 200,000, gone bankrupt on $35,000, sold a $20,000 family car and more documented money including state unemployment benefits, accused me of illegal porn on one of three computers [the one she bought] and he will not bring this up in court because the Judge will get mad.

My lawyer and wife's lawyer did not show up for the pretrial conference, [probably] had already agreed on getting money out of me]

My wife took the computer to the local police; they did not find illegal porn, somehow later the U.S. attorneys office found illegal porn. The U.S. attorneys office told me they could not prove how / or who caused the porn.

I informed the U.S. attorney of wife's former husband contacting me, volunteering to testify in my behalf, that she demanded a new car when they divorced or she would charge him will sexual misconduct with her teenage daughter. Her former husband comes by , stated he was concerned she might get a hit man.

The lawyer's still insist I give her $35,000 and pay her health insurance until the FREE obamacare goes into effect

She is presently living in a government paid apartment at all your [taxpayers'] expense.

I thank you all for paying your taxes. My wife needs your support.

I intend not require your support, I will live in a tar paper shack as long as possible. Although the lawyers and my wife will try to get me in prison, at least I will have " three hots and a cot" [ at taxpayers expense].

It's all about her liberal, greedy, "the government owes me" attitude

Spencer Chaffin swc453@sbcglobal.net

Fulton Mo 65251.

-- Posted by swc453 on Fri, Jan 7, 2011, at 5:41 PM

Isle of capri sends out VIP cards to gamblers for reduced rate hotel rooms, and meals ect.

Even though my wife had banned herself in 2002, they continued to send the cards and allow her to gamble.

When I got the cards [ after she left the house ], I called the betsoff line. They told me that I needed to get paychatric therapy. I emailed the Governor, Attorney General, senators, and representives.

A gambling law enforcer [ Lt on Mo. Highway patrol ] and three days they arrested helene at Boonville. She had used a different name to ban herself. Cooper county court fined her for trespassing.

I will soon be in the poor house if her plans continue. ;;;; She is presently living on your tax money in a goverment apartment. Someone will have to make up the money that she went bankrupt, for her gambling debts.

I will try not to be a burden on the taxpayers, [ I am 73 and can not find a job].

But some think gambling is great, but there are a lot of that know of the poverty it causes


-- Posted by swc453 on Fri, Jan 7, 2011, at 6:02 PM

Good job Magnet!!!! Pat yourself on the back for a year of success. After about a hundred other organizations endorsed the casino, you decided it was time for an endorsement. After six months of snoozing you decided it was time to jump on the bandwagon. Good job - take a lot of credit for the casino, you worked hard.

-- Posted by ParkerDaws on Fri, Jan 7, 2011, at 6:33 PM

I want to thank Mr. Perry, the Isle of Capri and David Knight for their interest and commitment to downtown Cape. Looking forward to dynamic positive impact this will have on this area. Anyone who wants to know how much positive impact it will have should drive up north Main and north Spanish from Mill St. to the floodgate and levee that crosses north Main. Then two years from now drive thru again. They have already demolished some of the worst structures there. Good Luck to all.

-- Posted by flowershopgirl on Wed, Jan 12, 2011, at 5:38 PM

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