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Trump Taj Mahal Casino Gets New Lease Of Life

Trump Taj MahalAs many as 4 Atlantic City casinos of the 6 Approved Casinos in 2013 were forced to shutdown operations in 2014 and many believed that the Trump Taj Mahal would be a part of that casualty list. The gambling industry in New Jersey has taken a huge dip and this has had a major impact on all casinos. After incurring huge amounts of debt, the Taj Mahal decided to file for bankruptcy in 2014 and was preparing to layoff around 3000 casino workers.

However, casino owners worked tirelessly during the last 2 months in an effort to obtain financing to give the Taj Mahal a new lease of life.

Billionaire Carl Icahn invested $20 million into the Taj Mahal and ensured that the casino will have sufficient funds to operate for another 12 months.

In a statement, Icahn said

I do not typically shy away from a challenge. In fact, I take great pride in my ability to successfully rebuild failing businesses. As you correctly pointed out, a few years ago I took a chance at the Tropicana by investing when others would not, and today the Tropicana is a profitable, viable casino that provides stable employment for almost 3,000 workers. In addition to gaming, I’ve also had tremendous success rehabilitating businesses in other industries, including oil and gas, metals and real estate.

While most casinos ran New Year eve promotions advertising the latest in games and entertainment, the Taj Mahal ran a “We’re Staying Open” campaign informing the public that the casino would not being shutting down operations and they were open for business. During the last 60 days, the Taj Mahal has been in the news for all the wrong reasons. The casino wanted to advertise that it had survived a turbulent period and would continue to fight in 2015.

The Trump Taj Mahal has at best 12 months to turn things around and start showing a profit. Icahn had earlier proposed a lifeline of $100 million to the troubled casino but wanted the state to give him a number of tax breaks. Icahn also wanted casino workers to take a reduction in wages in order to help keep the casino afloat, a move that was opposed by the casino’s union.

State officials decided to back out of the $100 million deal because they believed it was extremely one sided. Icahn wanted tax cuts amounting to $14 million in savings and also wanted casino union workers to take a reduction in salary. It remains to be seen if the state and Carl Icahn can work out a new deal in 2015.

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