Following the closure of properties in mid-March due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Boyd Gaming Corporation (BYD - Free Report) recently announced that it will reopen seven properties across Louisiana and Mississippi. The company stated that these will be the first Boyd Gaming properties to reopen amid the pandemic.
However, upon reopening, these are likely to operate with limited amenities and capacity restrictions in accordance with state and local guidelines aimed at mitigating and minimizing the virus spread. Notably, social distancing requirements will also be in place across casino floors and restaurants.
Boyd Gaming plans to reopen three Louisiana properties, namely Delta Downs Racetrack Casino Hotel, Evangeline Downs Racetrack Casino Hotel and Treasure Chest Casino, on May 20. This will be followed by the reopening of two of its Mississippi properties, IP Casino Resort Spa in Biloxi and Sam's Town Hotel & Gambling Hall in Tunica, on the next day. The company also plans to resume operations at two additional properties in Louisiana, namely Amelia Belle Casino and Sam's Town Shreveport, in the coming weeks.
President and chief executive officer of Boyd Gaming, Keith Smith stated, “Across the country, we are implementing comprehensive safety protocols approved by local, state and federal health officials. We are optimistic that we will be able to reopen most of our properties over the next several weeks, and we look forward to offering our guests a safe and enjoyable entertainment experience."
So far this year, shares of Boyd Gaming have declined 40.5%, underperforming the industry’s 32.4% decline.
Boyd Gaming has already taken certain strategic measures to protect the business in this crisis scenario. These measures include the suspension of dividend and stock buyback programs. Notably, this is in line with its motive of preserving cash and maintaining ample liquidity to avoid a possible recession due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Although the virus has triggered a catastrophe in terms of lives lost and financial impact, the company appears resilient enough to navigate through these uncertain times. We believe that it will continue to monitor the COVID-19 crisis and adjust contingency plans accordingly.
Boyd Gaming — which shares space with Century Casinos, Inc. (CNTY - Free Report) , Eldorado Resorts, Inc. (ERI - Free Report) and Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS - Free Report) in the Zacks Gaming industry — has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
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