By Owain Flanders
Stephen Crystal, Head of Betfred Sports US Development, believes Las Vegas will eventually return to being an industry-leading region once the dust has settled post-COVID-19 – although it could take some time.
Speaking during a Betting in Face of COVID-19 online conference, Crystal outlined his prediction for the recovery of the land-based casino industry in the US.
He said: “I see good things coming out of this. I see quick moves towards innovation. No one sees brick-and-mortar going away.
“It will probably take towards the end of 2021 for the regional casinos and tribal casinos to come back.
“For Vegas, this will take longer, but we are innovative and resilient people.”
Crystal argues the US casino industry’s “deep relationship” with its millions of customers will help it survive, along with its work supporting employees and community programmes such as food banks.
Although the crisis has caused Vegas to go from “100mph back to 0,” Crystal insists the region will rise to the top once more.
He said: “Vegas has never been shut down in its history, but the elements are in place that when vaccines are found and we come together and get through it, Vegas will be a leader like it always has been.
“The best of the best will be perfected here and I’m very bullish on that future.”