“There are some pretty exciting things that will bring Greektown into the now and make it more relevant to the competition and Detroit in general,” commented Puggi right after the Michigan Gaming Control Board approved him as Greektown Casino‘s new CEO.
Puggi, a 30-year casino veteran who has worked in management at several gaming companies including MGM Resorts International and Herbst Gaming, said Greektown Casino will undergo major upgrades, including interior remodeling, new dining offerings and a new marketing campaign to improve its image.
Puggi also acknowledged Greektown is coming out of a tough spot. Greektown was the last of the Detroit casinos to open and the last to complete a renovation and expansion program unveiled in February, 2009 . The expansion added a 400-room hotel; plus 25,000 square feet of casino space. In May 2008, Greektown owners filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Detroit, after failing to comply with terms of a credit line. In July, 2010, Greektown Holdings L.L.C. and its subsidiaries emerged from bankruptcy just over two years after having filed for Chapter 11 protection.
“It’s had its challenges. Obviously, with my appointment, we provide some consistency, some direction going forward, and I think that the staff is going to gravitate toward that. Greektown’s positioned very well to really move forward.” added Puggi.
The announcement came the same day the Michigan Gaming Control Board informed that revenue at three casinos was up 2.7% in May compared to last year. The revenue reported by MGM Grand Detroit Casino for May increased 4.8% ($51.2 million), MotorCity Casino was up 1.1% ($38.8 million), and Greektown was up 1.2% ($30 million). For the three-month period ending in May, combined casino revenues were up 4.2% compared to the same time in 2010, the gaming board said.