Revel to file for bankruptcy

The Associated Press is reporting that Atlantic City’s newest casino, Revel, will file for bankruptcy in March.

According to the report the move will wipe out about two-thirds of its $1.5 billion in debt by converting more than $1 billion of it into equity to be paid to the casino’s lenders.  The pre-packaged bankruptcy will allow the casino to continue to operate under a restructured debt load.

“Today’s announcement is a positive step for Revel,” said casino CEO Kevin DeSanctis. “The agreement we have reached with our lenders will ensure that the hundreds of thousands of guests who visit Revel every year will continue to enjoy a signature Revel experience in our world-class facility.”

The casino opened in April to great fanfare and was touted as the crown jewel that would spark a resurgence in Atlantic City.  But the casino, an enigma to the city that has long been the stepchild to the glitzier Las Vegas and in more modern days has lost revenue to casinos in Connecticut and more recently Pennsylvania, never caught on among the city’s faithful.

Its revenues put it at or near the bottom of the pack and rumors of its demise have been swirling almost since the day it opened.

Administration officials stressed that the bankruptcy does not effect its commitment to the resurgence of the city.

“We are committed to the resurgence of Atlantic City, the tourism district, and the many efforts currently underway to bring world-class attractions and entertainment to the City,” said spokesman Michael Drewniak. “A rejuvenated Revel will remain an integral part of that landscape, as it continues full operations as a premiere hotel, gaming and top-flight entertainment hub for the city, in addition to employing more than two thousand people.  Most importantly, none of those things that make Revel among Atlantic City’s highest-profile attractions will change, as Revel uses this new financial flexibility and the continued backing of its investors to grow the business and be part of Atlantic City’s expansion.”

"This meeting is entirely off the record. Until somebody leaks it."
—Michael Kempner, addressing a roomful of Democratic powerbrokers organizng for Hillary Clinton