Last year with MGM Grand Detroit leading, the three gaming properties in Michigan’s biggest city reported a record $1.454 billion in revenue. That’s a $10 million increase from the $1.444 billion generated in 2018.

Last year MGM Grand Detroit and MotorCity Casino each achieved all-time highs in annual revenue. Grand Detroit is run by MGM Resorts International, whereas the MotorCity Casino belongs to Marian Illitch, who, along with Mike Illitch, her late husband, co-founded Little Caesars Pizza.

According to a statement by the Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB) obtained by, “Both MGM Grand Detroit and MotorCity Casino experienced their highest yearly adjusted gross revenue totals since the casinos opened in 1999. MGM Grand Detroit reported $623.5 million in yearly revenue, compared with $619.2 million in 2018, which was its previous record revenue year. It was a 0.7 percent year-over-year increase.”

Detroit’s third gaming property, the Greektown Casino, generated 2019 revenue of $337.2 million, a 0.6 percent rise from the previous year. Last May Penn National Gaming and Vici Properties acquired that venue from Jack Entertainment for $1 billion.

MGM Rules

MGM Grand Detroit commanded 43 percent of share in that market last year, with MotorCity Casino and the Greektown having 34 percent and 23 percent, respectively. Although MotorCity was in second place, it still experienced year-over-year revenue increase on its way to record revenue.

The MGCB said, “MotorCity’s $493.6 million in yearly revenue also surpassed its former record of $489.7 million set in 2018. It was a 0.8 percent year-over-year increase.”
Though an increase from the previous year Greektown’s $337.2 million in 2019 turnover fell short of the record high of $352.8 million set in 2011.

In eight months last year, MGM Grand generated more than $50 million in monthly revenue, and in four of the last six months of 2019, the property’s turnover exceeded $51 million. At $46.49 million, September was the worst month of 2019 for MGM’s Michigan venue, while March, at $59.24 million, was the leading month.

On the back of those robust 2019 numbers, Detroit’s casinos sent a little more cash to state funds last year than in 2018.

According to the MGCB, “The three casinos paid the State of Michigan $117.8 million in gaming taxes in 2019 compared with $117 million in 2018. The casinos paid $10.4 million in gaming taxes to the state in December compared with $10.3 million during December 2018.”

Perhaps Another Good Year

For 2020, the MGCB didn’t make revenue forecasts for the three Detroit casinos or Michigan’s 23 tribal gaming properties. However, if the state can get sports wagering operational sometime this year, revenue numbers could improve.

In December, Michigan approved sports betting, and online and mobile betting are part of that package.

Industry spectators have different opinions on exactly when sports betting will be ready for the people in the state, with ambitious time lines hinting to the spring, but after March Madness. Less hopeful estimates suggest it could take this whole year for Michigan to prepare sports betting.

The state is expected to realize $19 million in annual revenue from sports wagering.