February 7, 2022 3 min read


Boyd Gaming Sees Strong 2021, Wastes No Time Launching Spending Spree

2021 was good to Boyd Gaming. It was so good that the gaming operator isn’t wasting any time spending the money it earned. A number of “capital project” investment plans are in the works, with one already underway. In addition, the company will pay dividends to investors.

Boyd Bounces Back

Boyd had a record year, with $3.4 billion in revenue and adjusted earnings of $1.4 billion. 24 of its 27 US properties saw double-digit revenue growth in the fourth quarter of last year. In an earnings call from last Thursday, the company’s CEO and president, Keith Smith, said he is optimistic about the future of strong growth in 2022.

Due to the rapid spread of COVID-19’s omicron variant, there was a slight slowdown at the end of December as well as the beginning of January. However, the sector appears to be quickly rebounding from this lull.

Smith gave details about the dividend program to investors in his talk. He stated that the company’s board authorized a quarterly cash dividend at $0.15 per share for shareholders who were registered as of March 15.

This is more than twice the amount the company paid before the pandemic and reflects the company’s strong cash flow, operating margins, and dividends. The payouts are expected to be delivered by April 15.

Boyd can now return approximately $500 million to shareholders through dividends and $150 million in stock buybacks since the share repurchase program was relaunched last year.

Property Improvements Underway

Boyd Gaming began a $50-million renovation of the Fremont in downtown Las Vegas as a result of its strong performance last year. The renovation is part of a larger plan to spend $250 million this year on capital projects.

Renovations are mainly focused on the improvement of the food and beverage areas. The casino floor will be expanded and enhanced. The renovations will include the elimination of the previous buffet area and the expansion and enhancement of the casino floor.

The Fremont has been a popular spot in downtown Vegas for many years. Boyd was considering an expansion of the property before the pandemic, with talks of a new tower with 509 rooms.

Boyd also plans to expand its business beyond Las Vegas. In the fall, the Sky River Casino in Sacramento will open. Boyd Gaming also spent $95 million on the transformation of Treasure Chest Casino, Louisiana, from a riverboat to a land-based casino.

Smith commented on the prospects of the Fremont renovation. He stated, “Based on the demand we’re already seeing at the Fremont, we expect to see excellent returns from this investment following its completion in early 2023.”

Smith noted that the newly opened Circa Las Vegas resort is attracting more people to downtown. In addition, the CEO stated that downtown Vegas is a popular spot for value-seekers, which has benefited Boyd’s three properties in the area, as well.


Erik brings his unique writing talents and storytelling flare to cover a wide range of gambling topics. He has written for a number of industry-related publications over the years, providing insight into the constantly evolving world of gaming. A huge sports fan, he especially enjoys football and anything related to sports gambling. Erik is particularly interested in seeing how sports gambling and online gaming are transforming the larger gaming ecosystem.

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