October 28, 2013

MGM leaving Foxwoods Casino

The international company has been a sponsor since a $700 million tower addition in 2006.

The Associated Press

MASHANTUCKET, Conn. — A casino tower that was added to the Foxwoods Resort Casino in 2008 will no longer carry the name MGM Grand, both sides said Monday.

click image to enlarge

In this November 2010 file photo, the MGM grand tower at Foxwoods Resorts Casino rises over the landscape in Ledyard, Conn. MGM is ending its partnership with the casino as it focuses on its bid to build a casino in Springfield, Mass.

AP Photo/Jessica Hill

The tribe that owns the casino in southeastern Connecticut and MGM Resorts International have ended to their licensing agreement.

MGM, which is based in Las Vegas, wants to avoid confusing consumers as it pursues a bid to build its own casino Springfield, Mass., spokesman Clark Dumont said.

Foxwoods President and CEO Scott Butera said the renaming of the tower is part of a campaign to reinvigorate the Foxwoods brand that will include improvements to the property.

“When we looked at the master plan for the resort and our current opportunities, it was obvious that the iconic brand of Foxwoods needed to be at the forefront of our transformation,” Butera said in a written statement.

The licensing agreement was signed in 2006 as MGM was looking to increase its brand recognition on the East Coast, and Dumont said the relationship with Foxwoods did not go beyond use of the MGM name. The tower bearing the MGM name opened in 2008 at a cost of $700 million.

Foxwoods, the largest casino complex in North America, is owned and operated by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation.

MGM is one of the companies pursuing a license for a casino in western Massachusetts. It would likely compete with Mohegan Sun, which operates a massive casino seven miles away from Foxwoods in Connecticut and is also in pursuit of a resort casino in the western Massachusetts town of Palmer.

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