Steve Wynn No Longer CEO of Wynn Resorts

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Steve Wynn No Longer CEO of Wynn Resorts

The CEO of Wynn Resort’s Steve Wynn has been hit with sexual allegation claims with the slew of accusations pushing the Massachusetts’s Gaming Panel to subsequently review the current project the company is developing in Everett, Massachusetts. Wynn Resorts had invested significant time and capital in getting the go-ahead to build a $2.4 billion casino in the state, but following the damming accusations the company’s stock plummeted by as much as 19%.

On Tuesday, Steve Wynn then attempted to steady the boat after resigning from his position as CEO and chairman of the board, but with the 76 year-old continuing to maintain his innocence in the matter. Commenting upon his dramatic decision and the appointment of Matt Maddox in his place, Wynn explained:

“In the last couple of weeks, I have found myself the focus of an avalanche of negative publicity. As I have reflected upon the environment this has created — one in which a rush to judgment takes precedence over everything else, including the facts — I have reached the conclusion I cannot continue to be effective in my current roles.”

Gaming Panel Reviewing Wynn License

Last week the Wall Street Journal released a report unveiling dozens of reports of sexual assaults and inappropriate advances made by Steve Wynn to women working with the company. One such report includes a manicurist testifying that the CEO forced her to undress and perform sexual acts, with the case later dismissed following a $7.5 million settlement.

Needless to say, the sexual allegations laid against Wynn soon reached the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) which originally granted the casino company a license for its latest project, with the body reportedly launching a review into the issue. The commission is not responsible for dealing with criminal matters, though, and is likely awaiting feedback from its counterparts in Nevada before deciding upon an appropriate course of action.

Integrity At Stake

Spokesperson for the Massachusetts Gaming commission, Elaine Driscoll, released a statement saying that the integrity and suitability of candidates applying for gaming licenses is of the utmost importance for the Commission. As such, the Investigations and Enforcement Bureau of the MGC will now be tasked with reviewing the matter in order to determine what steps to take next.

Massachusetts’ gaming law requires that the character, reputation, and integrity of the directors and CEOs of a company should be taken into consideration when a casino operator applies for a license. In 2014, for instance, the gaming panel reviewed Wynn Resorts and its key officials, subsequently finding them suitable and so resulting in the company being granted a state license permitting it to build Wynn Boston Harbor Resort.

The casino was expected to open in 2019, and while the license has been already awarded, the MCG reserves the right to revoke it should a client fail to meet the required standards of suitability, which in Massachusetts’ gaming law includes behavior patterns that the MGC considers to be misconduct.

Wynn Resorts Responds to Accusations

Wynn Resorts has responded to the allegations by stating that the firm was committed to upholding ethical standards and safeguarding the rights of its 23,000 employees. The company also said that all its staff regularly undergo anti-harassment training in order to create a safe and productive working environment, particularly for women. Nevertheless, the person who blew the whistle on Steve Wynn claims that she had reported his sexual misconduct to human resources, while the company insists that it had received no such complaints against him through its anonymous hotline.

While the MGC has confirmed it is to review the allegations and assess if Wynn Resorts is able to continue with the license, experts in the gaming industry feel that the performance of Wynn Resorts will likely be unaffected by the scandal. In addition, Steve Wynn stepping down from the board will likely have a further positive impact on the MGC’s ultimate decision.

Steve Wynn Denies Claims

Steve Wynn has denied all the allegations leveled against him, and claims that they are part of a plan by his ex-wife Elaine Wynn to publicly slander and destroy him. The pair are currently in the middle of a high-profile legal battle over shares in Wynn Resorts, with Steve Wynn claiming that Elaine has been helping to orchestrate the media storm surrounding him. Steve Wynn is the main investor in Wynn Resorts, and owns around 12% of the company’s shares, and while Elaine Wynn refused to comment upon the accusations, her attorney has stated that these allegations are false.

In addition to resigning from his position as company CEO, Wynn also earlier resigned from his position as the financial chair of the Republican National Committee (RNC) following the spate of sexual allegation claims being made against him.

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