Wynn Resorts CEO Matt Maddox announced yesterday that he will leave the company on January 31, 2022. The Board of Directors unanimously requested that Maddox remain on the Wynn Macau Limited Board and Wynn Interactive Limited Boards until the end of 2022. The Board unanimously elected Craig Billings, Wynn Interactive’s CEO and president and also CFO of Wynn Resorts, to become the CEO of Wynn Resorts as of February 1, 2022.
Maddox Steps Down From Wynn Resorts
Philip G. Satre, Chairman of the Board for Wynn Resorts, stated that Matt has done an amazing job since his appointment four years ago. He led the company through one of the most significant business transitions in decades.
“Matt’s strategy to confront the pandemic and its economic impact on the Company proved to be the correct one: make decisions focused on the welfare of employees, guests and communities, and invariably the business and its shareholders will reap the rewards. He was a leader in the recovery of the Nevada hospitality industry, and his leadership in this area was recognized nationally as well,” he added.
Wynn Resorts has had Maddox in the company for over 20 years. He has served as its CEO since February 2018 and is also a member of the Board of Directors. After the resignation of Wynn Resorts’ founder Steve Wynn in 2018, and the subsequent global pandemic in 2019, he led the company through a difficult time. As CEO of Wynn Resorts, Maddox rebuilt the company’s culture and also reestablished Wynn Resorts’ status as one the most prestigious luxury brands in the world.
Maddox said in an announcement, “The last four years have been challenging but extremely rewarding, and I am incredibly proud that we accomplished so much. We quickly resolved litigation that had distracted the company for seven years. We reorganized the company’s leadership team and focused on our 28,000 employees, rebuilding and strengthening our powerful culture to focus on a common purpose: create and deliver the best guest experiences.
Rumors Circle Over Departure
There has been no definitive reason given for the expedited departure. However, the Vegas rumor mill is already starting to turn. One rumor has questioned whether the exit is linked to an internal investigation into an unspecified incident involving Maddox that was conducted last year. However, according to company information, that investigation cleared Maddox of any wrongdoing.
The other rumor is that Maddox might be gearing up to make a run on the Nevada governor’s office. The state gubernatorial elections will be held next year, and leaving in January would give him time to start planning his campaign.
Neither rumor has been confirmed as the reason for his departure.
Billings the Right Man for the Job
Wynn Resorts’ chief financial officer was Billings’ first assignment. He also served as president of the company and, most recently, CEO of Wynn Interactive. Since August 2018, Billings is a Wynn Macau Limited board member. He was previously with Goldman Sachs, where he was part of the executive and board ranks. He has also had executive and board positions with Aristocrat Leisure Limited, NYX Gaming Group and IGT.
Billings said of the new appointment, “Having worked so closely with Matt and the Board, I appreciate the confidence they have placed in me and look forward to building upon the legacy of excellence we’ve established.”