Gaming, Tourism, and Conventions
Las Vegas is the birthplace of the United States’ gaming industry and continues to lead both the tourism and convention industries. Major gaming corporations like MGM Resorts International, Caesars Entertainment, Wynn Resorts Limited, Las Vegas Sands, and Scientific Games are headquartered in Las Vegas. These companies cater to the 41 million tourists who visit the region every year. Las Vegas has also been the No. 1 domestic convention location for two decades. But the gaming, tourism, and convention cluster is far more complex than what you see in advertisements. Las Vegas is home to hundreds of non-gaming companies that serve the Las Vegas Strip, including gaming technology, aviation, and convention services companies.
Find out more about Southern Nevada’s: Gaming Technology , Aviation, and Convention Services companies by scrolling below.
INDUSTRY OVERVIEW & STATISTICS
gaming, tourism & conventions CLUSTER
|Employment in Cluster||348,493|
|Regional Yearly Average Wage in Cluster||$32,802|
|Cluster Employment Growth (2014/15)||3.1%|
SOUTHERN NEVADA gaming, tourism & conventions INDUSTRIES
REGIONAL AVERAGE WAGES
|Gaming Device & All Other Miscellaneous Manufacturing||$97,687|
|Motion Picture and Video Production||$32,522|
|Convention & Trade Show Organizers||$48,180|
Southern Nevada has key assets that make our market especially competitive in this sector.
KEY ASSETS TO THE GAMING, TOURISM, AND CONVENTIONS CLUSTER
McCarran International Airport (LAS) is ranked the 7th busiest airport in North America. In 2014, passenger totals reached nearly 43 million. In June of 2012, the newly completed $2.4 billion Terminal 3 opened. McCarran will now be able to handle 53 million passengers a year without additional work on runways or terminals. www.mccarran.com
The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA) is the official destination marketing organization of Las Vegas, the LVCVA promotes tourism, conventions, meetings and special events – as well as ongoing advocacy to extend the city’s influence as a leader in tourism and hospitality. To drive the tourism engine that powers the Southern Nevada economy, the LVCVA is charged with and committed to building and protecting the Las Vegas brand among its diverse audiences of current and potential visitors. With more than 150,000 hotel rooms in Las Vegas alone and nearly 11 million square feet of meeting space citywide, the LVCVA’s mission focuses on attracting ever-increasing numbers of leisure and business visitors to the area. www.LVCVA.com
The University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV) William F. Harrah College of Hotel Administration is consistently ranked as one of the country’s top 2 college hospitality programs. With more than 150,000 hotel rooms, Las Vegas is the ideal living laboratory for the study of hospitality. More than 130 local hospitality industry executives mentor UNLV students each semester. www.unlv.edu/hotel
MGM Resorts International is Nevada’s largest employer with more than 56,000 employees. MGM Resorts is ranked by Fortune as the 287th largest firm in the United States. With about $9.8 billion in revenues in 2013, MGM Resorts is one of the leading hospitality companies in the world. MGM Resorts boasts 21 resorts worldwide, with 13 in Southern Nevada. MGM Resorts is a staple in the Las Vegas community and it is truly one of the many success stories that are made possible in Southern Nevada. www.mgmresorts.com
Caesars Entertainment is the second largest property owner on the Las Vegas Strip and the fourth largest gaming company in the world. Founded by legendary gaming pioneer William F. Harrah, the corporation was the first gaming company to be listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Today, Caesars operates more than 50 properties around the world, including Caesars Palace, Planet Hollywood Casino and Resort, the Paris Las Vegas and the Linq entertainment complex, which contains the world’s largest observation wheel, the High Roller at the Linq.
Founded by integrated resort pioneer Steve Wynn, Wynn Resorts is the third largest private employer in Nevada. With over 11,000 employees at its Wynn and Encore properties and annual revenue of $5.6B, Wynn Resorts is an important part of the gaming industry in Nevada and worldwide.
One of the most successful gaming corporations in history, the Las Vegas Sands Corporation employs more than 9,000 people in its two properties in Las Vegas. Led by gaming mogul Sheldon Adelson, Las Vegas Sands has annual revenue of $14.5B and was ranked as the 209th largest corporation in the US by Fortune in 2014.
Station Casinos is one of the premiere operators in the “local” integrated resort industry in Las Vegas. Founded in 1976 by Frank Fertitta, Jr., Station Casinos now owns and operates nine major resort properties and eight smaller gaming and entertainment properties in the Las Vegas valley. The company employs thousands of people in Southern Nevada and is now run by Frank Fertitta III. Fertitta also owns Zuffa, LLC, the entity that runs the world renown Ultimate Fighting Championship.
In 1941, Boyd Gaming founder Sam Boyd arrived in Las Vegas with his family and started working as a dealer. After years of working his way up in the industry, Boyd saved enough money to buy a small interest in the Sahara Hotel and Casino. Today, Boyd Gaming is one of the largest employers in Nevada, with over $2.16B in annual revenue and nine major properties across the valley.
GAMING TECHNOLOGY COMPANIES
Scientific Games, headquartered in Las Vegas, is a leading innovator in the global lottery and regulated gaming industries. Beginning with the breakthrough technology that launched the world’s very first secure instant lottery game in 1974, the company has continued to advance the games, technology, programs, marketing research and security that have been a driving force behind the success of more than 300 customers on six continents over the last 40 years. In 2015, after acquiring Bally Technologies and WMS Systems, Scientific Games relocated its corporate headquarters to Nevada.
Konami, the Japanese developer and publisher of numerous video games, gaming platforms, toys, and trading cards, is undergoing a major expansion in Southern Nevada. Construction has begun on Konami Gaming’s North American Headquarters, which will more than double the footprint of the current facility to 316,000 square feet. When completed, the expanded operation will oversee development, sales, manufacturing, and service operations in North America and Europe.
Slot machine maker IGT and global lottery business GTECH, recently merged to create the world’s largest end-to-end gaming company. Headquartered in London, UK with a large presence in Las Vegas, NV, IGT offers gaming technologies on a variety of platforms. The company was founded in 1975 by Las Vegas gaming innovator Si Redd, and pioneered industry standards like video poker and wide-area progressive jackpots.
Australian gaming manufacturer Aristocrat Technologies is currently the second largest maker of slot machines in the world. With offices worldwide, Aristocrat’s design, manufacturing, sales, progressive, and casino management systems are headquartered in Las Vegas.
Australian gaming manufacturer Ainsworth Game Technology recently broke ground on its 290,000 square foot North American Headquarters in Las Vegas. The all new facility will be located in what has been recently termed the “Gaming Manufacturers Corridor,” where five of the largest gaming technology companies in the world have manufacturing and distribution operations.
Las Vegas is a focus city for Southwest Airlines, one of the four largest carriers in America. In 2014, Southwest Airlines carried just shy of 40% of all passengers arriving and departing from McCarran International Airport. The company currently employs more than 3,000 people in Las Vegas.
Las Vegas based Allegiant Travel owns Allegiant Air, a low-cost airline that specializes in connecting smaller markets to destinations all over the United States. With 1,800 employees and a $3B market cap, Allegiant is quickly becoming a player in the competitive passenger air market.
Founded in 1965, Papillon is the largest aerial sightseeing company in the world. With a fleet of 48 helicopters and fixed wing aircraft and over 600 employees, Papillon shuttles more than 600,000 passengers a year over the Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam, and Las Vegas Strip.
CONVENTION SERVICES COMPANIES
Founded in 1939, Global Experience Specialists (GES) is one of the largest convention services companies in the world. Headquartered in Las Vegas, GES employs thousands of direct employees and contractors and services many of the largest conventions in Las Vegas.
Based in Dallas with a large operating center in Las Vegas, Freeman is the premier convention services company in North America. Annually, Freeman produces more than 4,300 expositions and over 11,000 corporate and social events.
Czarnowski is a full service exhibit and event marketing firm that produces many of the high tech convention displays for Las Vegas conventioneers. Based in Chicago, the company was formed in 1947 and has a significant presence in Las Vegas.