More than $5 million in gaming revenue in first full month of Cape casino operation

Tuesday, December 11, 2012
The roulette dealer spins the wheel Oct. 30 on opening day of Isle Casino Cape Girardeau. (Laura Simon)

The numbers are in from Isle Casino Cape Girardeau's first full month of operations, released Tuesday by the Missouri Gaming Commission.

Isle Casino Cape Girardeau had gross receipts, minus winnings paid, of $5.37 million in November; it paid 21 percent of that, $1.12 million, to the state in taxes. The company also paid to the state $414,310 in admission fees during its first full month of operations.

The casino had 207,155 admissions in November resulting from 109,905 patrons.

Under state law, Missouri casinos pay a $2-per-person admission fee to state and local governments. This admission fee is split with $1 going to the state and $1 going to the casino's city. Fees are $2 per person for every two-hour visit, so the casino could have one patron with two admissions if that person stayed four hours.

Cape Girardeau city officials estimate annual city revenue from casino admissions will be between $3 million and $4 million.

Those playing the slot machines and other electronic gaming devices wagered $49.74 million in November. The casino's revenue after payouts on slot machines was $4.61 million.

Patrons wagered $3.56 million at table games in November. The casino's revenue after payouts on table games was $762,151.

The average win per patron was $48.94 in the first two days the casino was open.

The Cape Girardeau casino had the highest number of patrons among Isle of Capri's three Missouri casinos with 109,905, compared to 84,266 at Isle of Capri in Boonville, Mo., and 28,447 patrons at its Lady Luck property in Caruthersville, Mo.

Isle declined to comment on the state report, but last week released its quarterly earnings.

Dale Black, chief financial officer for Isle of Capri, said in a conference call Thursday that loss per share for continuing operations for the quarter was 11 cents, which was affected by $2.7 million in pre-opening costs in Cape Girardeau and about $2.5 million in costs associated with a subordinated note offering from the company in July.

Virginia McDowell, president and CEO of Isle of Capri, said during the call that Isle Casino Cape Girardeau was "ramping up" to expectations.

The casino's effect on downtown businesses has been mixed, depending on the type of business, said Marla Mills, executive director of Old Town Cape.

"It's too soon to tell what the long-term impact will be," Mills said. "We have such a wide variety of businesses downtown, it's hard to find something that impacts everyone in the same way."

Cape Girardeau city manager Scott Meyer said Monday the city was scheduled to receive an electronic deposit from the state for its portion of casino admissions for the two days in October the casino was open and the month of November totaling $329,184. The city will receive deposits on the 10th of each month.

This revenue will be kept in a separate account for tracking purposes. Expenses from this fund must be approved by the city council, Meyer said.

"One of the recommendations made by cities who have casinos have made in the past is, once the money starts coming in, you need to show the community the positive impact," Meyer said. "We tried to come up with some things we could do pretty quickly that would have a visual impact that people could actually see."

Some of the first projects to be paid for by casino funds are:

* Parking along Broadway;

* Building demolition along Good Hope and Sprigg streets to provide economic development opportunities;

* Demolition of the former Convention and Visitors Bureau building at Broadway and North Main Street;

* Traffic signal power backups;

* Additional warning sirens;

* Lighting improvements;

* A dog park;

* The River Heritage Museum and Fort D;

* Arena Park baseball fields; and

* Playground equipment.

mmiller@semissourian.com

388-3646

Pertinent address:

777 N. Main Street, Cape Girardeau, Mo.

Map of pertinent addresses

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