For years, William Bennett cleaned up in Las Vegas. He bought a dingy casino with a partner in 1974 and turned it into the strips most profitable gambling company. Now, Circus Circus Enterprises is struggling, and Chairman Bennett, who holds a 7.8% stake, may be on his way out. Impatient investors say Circus remains profitable, but its Excalibur and pyramid-shaped Luxor casinos have fallen behind rivals. Operating margins have dropped, and the share price had plunged 41% this year by June 30. Now, Bally Entertainment is seeking federal approval to take a 25% stake in Circus. Its bid could bring in other suitors, such as Caesars World.
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