Detroit Casinos Lost $25M In Revenue For October Due To Workers’ Strike

Written By Drew Ellis on November 15, 2023 - Last Updated on November 17, 2023
Image of shocked man pointing at downward arrow for story on Detroit casino revenue for October being hurt by the workers' strike

The three Detroit casinos lost out on millions of dollars during October due to the workers’ strike.

With October’s revenue numbers released by the Michigan Gaming Control Board on Tuesday, we now have a picture of what kind of impact the strike is having.

Last month saw revenue numbers dip back to the pandemic era, which is not a good sign for the casinos or the state when it comes to tax revenue.

Detroit casino gaming revenue down over 20%

In 2023, the three Detroit casinos – MGM Grand Detroit, MotorCity Casino and Hollywood Casino at Greektown – were all having solid years.

When it comes to revenue from slots and table games, the three were averaging $105.9 million per month through September. That was slightly greater than where they sat through nine months of 2022 ($105.3 million).

However, October’s $81.7 million in revenue through slots and table games was a big decline.

Here’s how it broke down by casino:

Detroit CasinoAverage 2023 Monthly
Revenue (through Sept.)
October 2023 RevenuePercentage Decline
MGM Grand Detroit$49.5 Million$37.3 Million24.6%
MotorCity Casino$32.1 Million$25 Million22.1%
Hollywood Casino
at Greektown
$24.3 Million$19.4 Million20.2%
Total$105.9 Million$81.7 Million22.9%

Collectively, the three casinos were down $24.2 million in October compared to the yearly average.

Retail sports betting also down over 20%

One of the big adjustments the Detroit casinos have had to make over the strike is with their retail sportsbooks.

All three have had to close the option of in-person betting with a staff member and direct people to betting kiosks. While the three still have the option to make wagers at their locations, the changes have impacted business.

When looking at the losses suffered, you have to compare the October results to last October. Since sports betting is seasonal, comparing to yearly averages doesn’t equate.

October is always a big Michigan sports betting month due to NFL and college football being in the thick of their respective seasons.

Here’s how each of the three casinos did by sports betting handle in October:

Detroit CasinoOctober 2022 HandleOctober 2023 HandlePercentage Decline
MGM Grand Detroit$9.57 Million$4.68 Million51.1%
MotorCity Casino$6.13 Million$5.94 Million3.1%
Hollywood Casino
at Greektown
$7.84 Million$7.49 Million4.5%
Total$23.54 Million$18.11 Million23.1%

Here’s a look at the sports betting revenue each casino did:

Detroit CasinoOctober 2022 RevenueOctober 2023 RevenuePercentage Decline
MGM Grand Detroit$721,368$364,93749.4%
MotorCity Casino$709,163$677,8184.4%
Hollywood Casino
at Greektown
$702,147$90,43087.1%
Total$2,132,678$1,133,18546.9%

While handle dipped just over 23% year-over-year, the revenue declining by nearly 47% is the bigger headline.

Collectively, Detroit casinos lost $25 million

When you add in the $1 million of retail sports betting revenue lost, the three Detroit casinos suffered a $25 million hit in October due to the strike.

Keep in mind the strike lasted just 14 days in October as well. Should this strike carry on throughout November, that is a significant loss for the three casinos that could be over $50 million.

These totals are starting to have a real impact on lost tax revenue as well.

The Detroit casinos were averaging $8.58 million in state tax revenue per month this year and $13.6 million in city of Detroit tax revenue. Last month, they brought in just $6.62 million for the state and $10.1 million for Detroit.

That’s a difference in total of nearly $5.5 million in collective tax revenue. With sports betting providing much lesser margins in tax revenue, it’s the gaming numbers that are the focus in this category.

Should the strike linger on, the state and city of Detroit could be missing out on over $10 million in collective tax revenue per month.

Photo by PlayMichigan
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Drew Ellis

Drew Ellis is the Lead Writer of PlayMichigan, the No. 1 source for online gambling news in Michigan. A lifelong resident of the state, Ellis has been working in various forms of media since 1998, including more than a decade in the sports betting industry prior to transitioning into US casino markets in 2020.

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