MGM Resorts employee relief fund hits $11M after donations from headliners

MGM Resorts employee relief fund hits $11M after donations from headliners

  • Howard Stutz, CDC Gaming Reports
April 8, 2020 5:56 PM
  • Howard Stutz, CDC Gaming Reports
  • Other

A relief fund for furloughed MGM Resorts International employees has reached $11 million following donations from some of the casino company’s high-profile entertainers.

In a statement Wednesday, the company said more than a dozen of its headliners and entertainment representatives contributed to its Employee Emergency Grant Fund.

MGM Resorts furloughed 60,000 employees out of its 69,000-person U.S. workforce after closing its nearly two dozen gaming and non-gaming properties in six states in an effort to slow the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

MGM paid two weeks of salary following the closures and is paying healthcare through June 30. In addition, the company put $1 million into the emergency relief fund set up to assist its employees and their families with unexpected hardships.

In a video posted to LinkedIn last week, MGM Resorts acting CEO Bill Hornbuckle said he put $100,000 into the fund, as did other company executives. Meanwhile, headliner Bruno Mars, who has a residency at Park MGM on the Strip, donated $1 million, and the foundation established by the late MGM founder Kirk Kerkorian put $2 million into the emergency relief fund.

“During these difficult and uncertain days, weeks and months, we are working tirelessly to support the tens of thousands of employees who were furloughed or laid off due to the closures of our properties across the country,” Hornbuckle said in a statement. “We are incredibly humbled by the support of our entertainment partners, who have come together to assist the people who, during normal times, are committed to creating incredible experiences for our guests from around the world.”

The company said entertainers David Copperfield, Jay Leno, Bill Maher, Kathleen Madigan, David Spade, Boyz II Men, Brad Garrett, Carrot Top, Terry Fator, Ray Romano, Jabbawockeez, Shin Lim, Thunder from Down Under, Hans Klok, Australian Bee Gees, Fantasy, and Bill Blumenreich Presents all donated to the fund.

“With donations from this extraordinary line-up of entertainers, commitments from MGM Resorts and its leadership team, our own employees, and a number of other generous contributions, we have already raised approximately $11 million to assist our employees during this time of unprecedented challenges and hardship,” Hornbuckle said.

Howard Stutz is the executive editor of CDC Gaming Reports. He can be reached at Follow @howardstutz on Twitter.