After declaring in January that its MGM Cotai development would not be opening until the second half of 2017, American casino operator MGM Resorts International has now reportedly revealed that the $3.1 billion Macau hotel and casino project will ‘probably’ welcome its first guests during the fourth quarter of 2017.

According to a report from GGRAsia, the revelation came from James Murren, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer for Las Vegas-based MGM Resorts International, which owns a 56% stake in future MGM Cotai operator MGM China Holdings Limited, during a recent conference call detailing the firm’s first-quarter financial results.

“It is going to open this year in the fourth quarter and probably right around [or] right after Golden Week, probably,” said Murren. “But it’s going to open this year for sure and it’s going to be very spectacular.”

Held every year from October 1, Golden Week celebrates the independence of China and is marked throughout the mainland as well as in Hong Kong and Macau with festivities including concerts and fireworks displays.

“Following the opening of [MGM] Cotai we expect MGM China [Holdings Limited] to enjoy significant upside, given what will be an exceptional up-tick in room supply for the company as well as the largest percentage increase in table supply for any of the ‘big six’,” Grant Govertsen from Union Gaming Securities Asia Limited told GGRAsia referring to the six directly-licensed casino operators in Macau.

Hong Kong-listed MGM China Holdings Limited already operates the nearby MGM Macau property and saw its first-quarter net revenues rise by 7.1% year-on-year to reach $502.3 million while its adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization increased some 25.2% to $142.9 million.

“Property earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization [at MGM China Holdings Limited] beat our estimate by 5% [and were] driven by strong mass revenues, [up by] 13% quarter-on-quarter, as [MGM China Holdings Limited] moved tables from VIP to mass,” read a Thursday note from analysts Praveen Choudhary, Alex Poon and Thomas Allen from global financial services firm Morgan Stanley.

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