Feel like craps? Trump Entertainment Resorts (TER, formerly Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts) owns and manages the Trump Plaza and the Trump Taj Mahal casino hotels in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The two properties house hotel rooms, gaming tables, and slot machines. The company also owns the right to use founder and former chairman Donald Trump's name and likeness for gambling promotions. (Unhappy with the actions of the board of directors, Trump resigned in 2009.) After spending about a year and a half in Chapter 11 reorganization, TER exited bankruptcy in 2010. The company sold its underperforming Trump Marina in 2011.
Massive debt, an economic recession, and competition from slot machines in neighboring states caused the company to enter bankruptcy proceedings. (The company had filed for bankruptcy twice before -- once in 2004 and another time in the early 1990s.) TER emerged from bankruptcy in 2010 with an infusion of $225 million from bondholders -- including Donald and his daughter Ivanka. Avenue Capital Group owns the largest stake in the reorganized company with a more than 20% share, while Trump owns about 10%.
TER maintained business operations at its casinos throughout the reorganization process, which took up the majority of 2009 and the first half of 2010. Its revenues were negatively affected by the continuing weak tourism and gaming markets, as well as competition from neighboring Pennsylvania casinos. (In 2010 Pennsylvania passed legislation that allows for table games at the state's casinos.) In response, TER remained focused on cutting costs, trimming its work force, and restructuring operations.
As part of these efforts, TER divested Trump Marina. In 2011 it sold the property to the Texas-based owner of Landry's Restaurants, which also owns the Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, for some $37 million. In addition to cutting costs, it made the sale in order to reduce debt, which was worth a total of $344 million, by about $30 million. Landry's intends to rebrand the Atlantic City casino as Golden Nugget after it completes renovations on the property. An illustration of dire state of the Atlantic City gaming market, TER had previously negotiated a Trump Marina sale with Coastal Marina LLC for about $316 million in 2008. That deal eventually fell through as a result of the credit crunch.
In 2010 Robert Griffin was appointed CEO of the company. He is TER's third CEO in recent years. (Former CEO James Perry retired in 2008, and then-COO Mark Juliano was tapped as his replacement.) Griffin joined the company from MTR Gaming Group, and is charged with increasing TER's profitably.
The infamous Trump formed TER for his casino holdings and separated them from his real estate holdings, which he operates through The Trump Organization. – less