Las Vegas based MGM Resorts International (MGM) is known for operating hotels and casino resorts across the world. Recently, the company’s share price took a beating after Chairman and CEO Jim Murren decided to step down from both these positions he holds at the company.
The company made the decision to search for a new CEO and their share price immediately slid, slipping 5.5% on Thursday to close the day at $31.80. Deutsche Bank analyst Carlo Santarelli wrote a note to investors saying it’s going to be difficult to find someone for the new role, but that Murren believes the company is in a good space to find a new leader.
Murren has been leading the company since 2008 and after 12 years at the helm, he believes the company is ready for someone else to lead them through a new phase of growth, which will include a larger focus on other industries such as sports. His contract expired end of 2021, so this is actually a premature departure from MGM.
“We’ve really changed the dynamic of this company. I thought it was pretty clear that a leader should help lead a company into the next decade or two. And so, I wanted to make sure the board had the time, which I will use promptly to do a robust search and find my successor,” Murren said on an earnings call on Wednesday.
He added that the board will be searching both internally as well as externally for someone to fill his boots. Until that successor is found, Murren will continue to hold office and it’s expected that he will be on the earnings call next quarter as well. Until then, his main focus will be on the company’s bid for an integrated resort in Osaka, Japan. Melco and Wynn Resorts dropped out and MGM is currently the only company to have its bid accepted in Japan.
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