CEO and PRESIDENT
MGM Resorts International
CHAIRPERSON and EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
MGM China Holdings Ltd
POWER SCORE: 1,059
POSITION LAST YEAR : Nil
CLAIMS TO FAME
- A 43-year veteran of the Las Vegas gaming industry
- On the opening team of The Mirage alongside Steve Wynn
- Joined MGM Resorts in the same month as predecessor Jim Murren
A true veteran of the industry, Bill Hornbuckle certainly picked an interesting time to step into the top role at MGM Resorts, vacated by former Chairman and CEO Jim Murren in March.
Initially installed as Acting CEO and President while MGM completed its checks and balances around who should lead the company into the future, Hornbuckle was confirmed as Murren’s permanent replacement in July – completing his 43-year rise through the ranks at the most challenging time the Las Vegas gaming industry has ever faced.
If navigating the COVID-19 pandemic wasn’t enough, MGM is also coming off a recent fire sale that saw it offload its most iconic Las Vegas property, MGM Grand, and a sizeable stake in the real estate investment trust that holds Mandalay Bay as part of a massive US$4.6 billion transaction in January.
That transaction was aimed at freeing up cash to plough into MGM’s US sports betting expansion as well as development of an integrated resort in Osaka, Japan – the latter of which Hornbuckle has since questioned to some extent given increasing uncertainty around Japan’s IR regulations.
Still, there are none in Las Vegas with better claims to the MGM Resorts throne than Hornbuckle. The 62-year-old arrived in Sin City from New England and never looked back, starting his career as bartender at the tender age of 18, then as a busboy at the Jockey Club. He spent time at Hilton Hotels, then Wynn Resorts where he helped open The Mirage in 1989.
Hornbuckle joined MGM in 1998, ironically in the very same month as his predecessor Murren – providing him unique insight into the company’s development over the past 22 years.
For the full list of 2020 Asian Gaming Power 50 winners, click here.