The Atlantic City Boardwalk casinos that bare Donald Trump’s name are once again entering into Chapter 11 bankruptcy filings. The aging casinos have been in financial trouble for years, and analysts believe this bankruptcy could end their operations for good.
The Trump Taj Mahal will close on or shortly after November 13, and all operations at the troubled location will terminate on November 27.
Michael Cohen, special counsel to Mr. Trump, said in prepared statement, “Mr. Trump brilliantly left Atlantic City more than seven years ago and has not been back. Mr. Trump has absolutely nothing to do with Trump Entertainment Resorts Inc..”
In court filings, Chief Executive Robert Griffin cited the need to halt litigation, including Mr. Trump’s suit, as one of the reasons for the Chapter 11 filing.
According to The Wall Street Journal, “the casino has suffered because of disappointing results from Internet gambling, rising Atlantic City taxes and the continued slide in revenue.”
While the Trump Taj Mahal has money in reserves, that cash would have quickly dwindled if it kept its doors open. The company would not have been able to pay its $285 million bond debt, with about $13.5 million in trade debt remaining.
Casinos along the Atlantic City Boardwalk have been suffering for years, and the Trump Taj Majal will join an increasing list of closures. Also closed this year are the Atlantic Club, Revel and Showboat casino.
In general the U.S. casino industry has taken huge hits. Because of a slow down in gambling tourism, the company attempted to sell the Trump Plaza and Trump Taj Mahal, but those efforts ultimately failed. The company also tried to receive concessions from Unite Here Local 54, but those negotiations stalled.
The corporation sold off many of its assets in the last three years, but those sales were not enough to keep the company afloat.
The Trump Taj Majal closure doesn’t come as a surprise, even the $2 billion Revel Casino Hotel couldn’t manage to keep its doors open. After only two years in operation, and two bankruptcy filings, the Revel Casino Hotel closed its doors one week ago. New Jersey had invested $261 million in the Revel casino to help complete its construction.
The closures don’t bode well for Governor Chris Christie, he has been attempting to reinvigorate the tourist industry in the area by injecting a lot of taxpayer dollars into various failed and failing initiatives.
When Trump Plaza closes there will only be eight remaining casinos in Atlantic City. Based on those numbers, 33 percent of the casino industry has been shuttered in New Jersey in less than one year.
The closure of Trump Taj Mahal would leave 2,800 workers without employment.