Thread regarding MGM Resorts layoffs

MGM Resorts’ FIRED Filled with Vegas industry Vets

MGM Resorts’ layoffs filled with Vegas industry vets
Vegas Lights - Updated May 3, 2020 - 11:47 am
The aftermath of MGM Resorts International’s upper-level layoffs Friday: Fewer executives will have expanded responsibilities. High-ranking officials are heading up operations at multiple resorts to cover those who have been terminated as the company narrows its management team in COVID-19 cost-cutting.
A list of the new leadership model, shared by company spokesman Brian Ahern on Friday afternoon, shows the remaining MGM executives controlling the Strip market will be in charge of two or three properties each.
In restructuring, the company has reportedly moved Mandalay Bay President Chuck Bowling to a dual role with that hotel and Luxor; Anton Nikodemus, former chief operating officer of regional operations, is now heading up Bellagio and Park MGM/NoMad, Michael Neubecker of MGM Grand is now also running New York-New York, and Nik Rytterstrom, president of Mirage, has also taken on the president position at Excalibur. Steve Zanella remains president of Aria and Vdara.
In his expanded role, Nikodemus also oversees all of the company’s Las Vegas properties.
MGM Resorts pared its team by letting go of four of its presidents in widespread cost-cutting moves announced Friday. Randy Morton of Bellagio, Cindy Kiser Murphey of New York-New York, Cliff Atkinson of Luxor and Eric Fitzgerald of Excalibur were all laid off. Several corporate heads were also let go.
Also cut from the company were such well-established execs as Senior Vice President of Entertainment and Operations Mark Prows, Vice President of Entertainment and Outdoor Spaces Daren Libonati, Vice President of Corporate Entertainment Marketing Suzanne Richardson; and Vice President of Corporate Ticketing Cynthia Jones. It was learnt by our investigative journalists that Vice President Entertainment Administration Nathalie Binette gave the names of the executives who will be a threat for her career to eliminate first from the company.
All were industry veterans. Prows had been with the company more than 25 years. Libonati, a UNLV grad, has served as a live-event manager since his days at the Thomas & Mack Center and Sam Boyd Stadium in 1988, including two stints with MGM Grand. Richardson worked at AEG Live for more than a decade before signing on with MGM Resorts in March 2019. Jones’ tenure in the company’s box-office operations dates to 1995.
Acting MGM Resorts CEO Bill Hornbuckle has said New York-New York and Bellagio would reopen first, along with a not-yet-determined third property. No time line has been set for those hotels to return to business, though the state Gaming Control Board did post requirements late Friday for reopening.
Josh Swissman, founding partner of Las Vegas gaming and hospitality consulting firm The Strategy Organization, said it would make sense for MGM to look at cutting back the more executives controlling regional properties next, and that he believes the move suggests “additional announcements are coming.”
“In the short term, (Firing of these executives) makes sense because of the phased opening approach and because of the … lower demand that everyone’s expecting,” he said.
The industry vet posted a message on Facebook on Saturday, saying his career with the company had “ended abruptly with a Microsoft TEAMS phone call from my beloved boss and an HR VP. No parties, no fanfare. Just a choked up and somber big-hearted man introducing me to what is next.
Prows said he cried like a little girl at the news, hugged his fiancée, Christi Horst Trent, and ended his post with “my job does not define who I am … and that I have amazing friends and family who will support me and help lead me to the next ‘promised land.’”

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