Past Preview Speaker

Jim Murren

Chairman and CEO MGM Resorts International

Jim Murren joined MGM MIRAGE as executive vice president and chief financial officer in 1998. On December 30, 1999, Mr. Murren was named president and chief financial officer, and in August, 2007, he became the president and chief operating officer. He now services as chairman and CEO of the organization. Mr. Murren is a member of the board of directors and its executive committee.

MGM MIRAGE (NYSE:MGG), headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada, is one of the world's leading and most respected hotel and gaming companies. The Company owns and operates 11 casino resorts located in Nevada, Mississippi and Michigan, and has investments in three other casino resorts in Nevada, New Jersey and the United Kingdom. MGM MIRAGE's pending merger with Mandalay Resort Group will result in the Company employing 75,000 people nationwide. The combined Company will operate 23 properties and have investments in 5 additional properties operating in 5 states and overseas. Prior to joining MGM MIRAGE, Mr. Murren spent 14 years on Wall Street as a top-ranked equity analyst and in 1994, he was appointed director of Research and managing director of Deutsche Bank. Mr. Murren is a chartered financial analyst and the recipient of several awards during his Wall Street career. Mr. Murren received his bachelor of arts degree in art history & urban studies from Trinity College in 1983 and is currently a member of the board of fellows of Trinity College.

2016 Business Voice Interview

Q: What are you most looking forward to in 2016?

A: There are so many things from a MGM perspective including the opening of the Las Vegas Arena, The Park and the new theater at Monte Carlo, all of which will contribute further to the attraction of Las Vegas to visitors, and will help support the further trajectory of more visitors.

Trajectory, that is a word that I think best befits the Las Vegas of this early millennium. We are seeing a resurgence of our traditional industry that is combining with emerging industries such as Tesla and Faraday to provide a larger foundation for economic growth and resilience. The dedicated focus on the infrastructure needs of our region through the leadership of state, regional and local officials will help ensure that the "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign beams brightly to welcome visitors for business or personal travel to experience all that our region has to offer. I'm also excited that we are on the international stage with the Presidential election.

Q: What is Southern Nevada’s greatest strength, as we transition into 2016?

A: The greatest strength of Southern Nevada, indeed our state, is our embracement of diversity. In so many ways, Nevada is reflective of the new United States with diverse populations, cultures and experiences that make us stronger. We say at MGM Resorts that we are united through diversity, and I think that is so with our region of the country.

Q: What keeps you up at night?

A: I'm never satisfied with the status quo. I'm always pushing to ensure we are innovating in everything we do. If we do that, if we provide ever more reasons for people to visit our city, if we continuously improve our business operations then we are several steps further in our objective to attract and retain high performing colleagues not just for the benefit of MGM as a company, but for the larger benefit of our community.

I'm pleased that we are continuing our focus on health care, and developing a state medical school to train our future health care leaders. Combined with the other medical schools and research and defense organizations we have an ever-broadening base of residents with unique and valuable qualifications.

Q: Where is our community capitalizing on opportunities? Where are we missing out and why?

A: I've been reflecting on our community's young history. In just 40 years, the population of Las Vegas has increased almost 800%. The number of resorts casinos has nearly doubled from 15 to 29. The number of affiliated employees has increased 1,600% to more than 100,000, and visitation has increased 600%.

We are fortunate to be set against a beautiful natural environment that provides a portal for tourism and travel. We also excel in capitalizing on diversity as one of our city's cornerstone values. At the same time, while we are leaders and innovators in stewarding our scarce natural resources, such as water, we must be relentless in striving to always doing more to protect our planet, and to be a sustainable destination.

Q: Keeping in mind the theme of Preview Las Vegas 2016 is “Future.Forward” and how Southern Nevada can collectively work towards advancing our economy and creating new opportunities for our region, how would you encourage the business community to move “future forward?”

A: We are fortunate to have a thoughtful, accessible and responsive government sector. Business needs to work closely with government, and it must support it, for the public sector provides the tools and resources that allow the business sector to operate whether attracting and managing world stage events, providing the resources through education to prepare the next generation of contributors and leaders, or keeping us safe and secure.

We need to also all get behind the new Convention Center District to keep Las Vegas in the forefront for the meeting, conferences and conventions sector which, combined with attracting international visitors, is an important component of our economic vitality.

Download the January 2016 Business Voice