Former Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of MGM Grand Detroit, Chris Kelley, has been named President and Chief Operating Officer of the Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield Park in Summit County, Ohio. The property that is approximately 17 miles southeast of downtown Cleveland and 18 miles north of Akron will be rebranded when MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) closes on the deal it announced in September to acquire operations of the racino from leading real estate investment trust (REIT), MGM Growth Properties LLC (NYSE: MGP), for $275 million.
According to the press release…
The veteran gaming executive will step into the new position at Northfield Park when the acquisition is finalized and regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions are met, which is expected to take place in the first half of this year. Once he assumes the role, Kelley will begin overseeing daily operations at the Ohio property while providing leadership and strategic direction.
“cemented itself as a market leader”
Chief Operating Officer of Regional Operations for MGM Resorts International, Anton Nikodemus said…
“We are thrilled to have the Northfield Park team joining the MGM Resorts family and look forward to Chris’ leadership and strategic vision driving the Company’s success as we expand into a new market in Ohio.
“The Rocksino already cemented itself as a market leader in gaming and entertainment and, with Chris at the helm, we are looking forward to building on that successful foundation and driving further growth,” said Nikodemus.
Kelley has worked as MGM Garand Detroit’s Vice President and Chief Financial Officer since 2017. During his time in Michigan’s Motor City, Kelley played a key role in the management and implementation of maintained improvement efforts and the development of the racino’s strategic plan, in addition to continually elevating the guest experience, according to the press release.
Before joining the Las Vegas-based MGM Resorts, Kelley reportedly held a number of leadership positions with the Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians-owned and operated Viejas Casino & Resort in Alpine, California. Kelley holds a master’s degree in Economics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and received bachelor’s degrees in Political Science and Economics from Connecticut College.
Arrangement with associated REIT::
In April 2018, MGM Growth Properties announced that it had entered into a membership interest purchase agreement with Milstein Entertainment LLC to acquire the Northfield Park property for approximately $1.06 billion. Then, in September, MGM Resorts International, MGM Growth’s majority owner, announced that during the first half of 2019 it would assume operating control of the leading revenue-generating casino or racino in Ohio.
MGM Growth Properties operates twelve venues on behalf of MGM Resorts International including The Mirage and Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, and in addition to MGM Grand Detroit, also manages the Beau Rivage Resort and Casino Biloxi and Gold Strike Tunica properties and will now benefit by charging its parent an annual $60 million rent for the Summit County enterprise.
The property, which sits on 110 acres, will reportedly be integrated into MGM Resorts offering of best-in-class entertainment and gaming destinations.
Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield Park consists of a 200,000-square foot gaming facility which features more than 2,300 video lottery terminals (VLTs), a variety of food and beverage outlets, entertainment venues, including the 1,876-seat Hard Rock Live and a 250-seat event space. The racino also includes Northeast Ohio’s only remaining commercial harness track, which is situated adjacent to the “Rocksino” on the Northfield Park grounds, and a rock ‘n’ roll branded, state-of-the-art gas service station and car wash.