How to Open a Casino In 19 Simple Steps | Complete Guide
Learning how to open a casino is one of the most complex processes a future business owner can take. The hospitality industry is a complicated space to begin with. But casinos are a whole category on their own, due to the number of regulations and casino tech firms that are part of operations.
Ready to begin? Read on to learn everything you need to know to open one of the best casinos in the nation.
How to Open a Casino In 19 Simple Steps
Learning how to open a casino won’t be the easiest concept you’ll ever learn. But by breaking the entire process down into simple steps, it can be much less overwhelming. Read on to discover the nineteen steps it’ll take to make your dreams of opening a casino a reality.
1. Conduct Market Research to Find a Location
Before moving forward with any of the following steps, you’ll need to find out if learning how to open a casino can lead to a profitable venture. Conduct research to find out the pros and cons of opening a casino in your area. If there are competing brands, this is also the time to find out what your competitive advantages will be. In the end, this plan should determine how your casino business will implement product differentiation.
2. Conduct a Casino Industry SWOT Analysis
What are the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of your casino in-progress? Once you have an understanding of these four areas, you’ll be able to execute a more personalized strategy. Plus, you'll have the insight to better pitch the business to investors. Always remember that SWOT analyses can change as a business evolves. So, once you launch a casino business, or any venture for that matter, be sure to conduct more analyses on a quarterly or annual basis.
3. Create a Thorough FInancial Analysis
A financial analysis will support the action plan for a casino. As you put techniques on how to open a casino into real-life practice, you’ll see the number of expenses that’ll be incurred. From casino food costs to forecasting metrics, this report will unpack a lot of information.
4. Educate Yourself On Gambling Laws and Regulations
There are countless legalities and regulations that you must be aware of before launching a business. From casino risk management to state and federal gambling laws, it’s all for the safety of you, your staff, and guests. Obtain resources from local and state authorities to educate yourself on these matters. It’s also ideal if you network with fellow industry professionals for the inside scoop from those with direct experience.
5. Hire a Legal Team to Successfully Launch a Casino
When opening a business, there are numerous team members that you’ll need for support. But as you learn more about how to open a casino, you’ll see that attorneys are especially important in this niche market. Though you’ll constantly be educating yourself on business, gambling, and labor laws, the protection of a legal team is a must. If you don’t, you may not be able to support yourself in the event of any legal troubles.
6. Acquire the Necessary Licenses and Permits
No matter how thorough your plans are, you can’t legally open a casino before acquiring the proper licenses and permits. These will vary depending on your state, municipality, and the current gambling laws. So, to get the best answer, check with your legal team and local authorities.
7. Write a Business Plan for Your Casino
Here’s where things get a bit more creative. Write a complete action plan for your soon-to-be casino business. The document should consist of the following topics:
- The concept and purpose of the casino.
- A vision and mission statement.
- The ideal customer profile and target market.
- A recruitment strategy and staffing outline.
- A 360-degree marketing strategy.
- A financial outline featuring all expenses.
- Financial projections for the first five years.
- The games and furniture it will require to run the casino.
- The casino management software tools you’ll need for operations.
- Any other on-premise businesses, like hotels, shops, and eateries.
8. Secure a Location That’s Suitable for a Casino
It’s not uncommon for entrepreneurs to be flexible when choosing a location for their new venture. But when it comes to casinos, it’s vital to be picky. For one, you need a structure that will comfortably accommodate all the casino games and furniture. It’s also a smart move to choose a location where it’s possible to implement bars, restaurants, and shops. If you can turn a portion of it into a hotel, you’re golden. With all of this in mind, be sure to learn about electrical, plumbing, and zoning features before signing any contracts.
9. Obtain Proper Funding to Bring Your Plan to Fruition
Casinos are some of the most expensive business ventures to bring to life. Unless you have millions of dollars at your disposal, you’ll need to secure funding from an outside source. Your two best options will be taking out loans and working with investors. Just remember that with both options, your business plan must cover everything.
10. Invest In Casino Games, Furniture, and Equipment
It wouldn’t be a casino without the games, proper tables, and equipment. After all, these are the resources that’ll turn an empty room into a money-making tourist destination. To fully furnish a casino, you’ll need to invest in the following products:
- Slot machines
- Poker tables
- Blackjack tables
- Craps tables
- Baccarat tables
- Roulette tables
- Roulette wheels
- Cards and dice
- Ample seating for each table
11. Double-Check the Functionality of All Electronic Games
Slot machines and other electronic casino games must work swiftly and efficiently. As a result, your business entity will be able to establish the best customer experience possible. Before opening the doors, conduct a run-through of all the electronics. If everything works, great! But if not, fix it before a customer has the chance to run into a problem.
12. Install High-Tech Surveillance Equipment
To keep a casino safe and profits secure, owners must keep a close eye on everyone who enters the facility. Stealing and fraudulent behavior are pretty common in casinos as you can probably imagine. While security is a concern regarding customers, you can never be too careful with the staff as well. So, install the most high-tech surveillance equipment on the market. This way, security personnel can protect the safety and integrity of the business.
13. Hire a Team of Well-Trained Security Professionals
Security professionals will be some of the most important roles within a casino. As you continue learning about how to open a casino, you’ll quickly come to learn this. Casino guests and staff are within a very close proximity to large sums of money. From gambling fraud to theft, there are many reasons why there must be eyes set on everyone at all times.
14. Hire a Qualified Staff for Each Department
Once you have the brick and mortar casino, it’s time to hire a team. For optimal results, invest in a recruiting firm to locate the best talent. This step is when you should research what the labor cost will be, from salaries to benefits. To begin, here are the following roles for a casino:
- A board of directors and upper-level casino management.
- Casino manager (see: casino manager salary).
- Dealers and other gaming personnel.
- Front of house and back of house security personnel.
- Remote and on-premise customer service representatives.
- Managers and cashiers for any on-premise shops.
- Wait staff, hosts, bar staff, bussers, and various types of chefs for any on-premise bars and restaurants.
15. Conduct Training Programs for Each Department
In order for casino operations to run smoothly, you must ensure that the entire employee roster is fully trained. This means that they must understand their duties inside and out, as well as have the knowledge to tackle potential risks. From dealers to on-premise restaurant servers, there are many experienced professionals within the walls of successful casinos.
16. Create and Execute a Casino Marketing Strategy
You can’t expect your casino business to flourish if you don’t market it to the right people. So, implement a variety of casino marketing ideas. From organic social media content to paid local advertising on Google, there are many paths you can take.
17. Host a Grand Opening With Exclusive Offers
Once you have everything in place, from a team to surveillance cameras, it’s time to open your casino! But it can’t be like any other day of the year. It has to be an exciting and anticipated grand opening event. Provide guests with live music, food, refreshments, raffles, and more. This way, the launch will leave a memorable first impression.
It might also be a good idea to create a Facebook event for the grand opening. This way, you can get an idea of how many people will be in attendance. Plus, Facebook events are easy for people to share, expanding the reach of who will hear about it.
18. Launch a Customer Rewards Program
Once you open a casino, it’s vital that you incentivize people to stop by and keep coming back. One way to do this is to launch a loyalty program. If your casino shares a property with shops and restaurants, consider creating an all-inclusive rewards program for the utmost flexibility.
19. Keep Up With Laws and Regulations
Just because you open a casino doesn’t mean that the work is over. Continue to educate yourself on gambling laws and regulations, as they’re always changing. It’s also ideal to conduct employee training and performance reviews on a regular basis. Lastly, frequently check if the electronic games and surveillance systems are working properly.
Frequently Asked Questions About How to Open a Casino
Okay, so you’re familiar with how to open a casino. But the learning doesn’t stop there! Check out the FAQ section below for some additional knowledge on the topic.
It can cost at least several million dollars to open a casino. When learning how to open a casino, you’ll quickly notice how expensive it is to acquire ample space, proper equipment, and necessary licenses. Plus, there are many ongoing costs, like insurance, casino software, and labor that you must pay for.
Is Learning How to Open a Casino Worth It?
If you’re passionate about learning how to open a casino, it’s definitely worth the journey. Though there are many complexities, it’ll be worth it, as casinos are very profitable.
Is It Possible to Start Your Own Casino?
Yes, it’s possible to start your own casino. However, it’s vital to remember that a large team is necessary for long-term success. From hospitality software companies to legal teams, it’s impossible to do it entirely alone.
Is It Difficult to Run a Casino Business?
Yes, it can be quite the challenge to run a successful casino. For one, there are many working parts to such a business model. Second, it’s absolutely vital to keep up with federal and state regulations, which can be pretty complex.
Is Opening a Casino a Profitable Business Venture?
Yes, opening a casino can be an extremely profitable business venture. This is especially true for casino infrastructures that offer more than just games. Those with restaurants, hotels, and shops within a close vicinity to the casino floor can generate millions per year.
Now It’s Time to Put Your Knowledge On How to Open a Casino Into Action!
It will take skill, passion, patience, and a whole lot of money to launch a casino. But now that you know how to open a casino from the ground up, you can be thorough during the process. Like anything else, ensure that each step is complete before moving onto the next. If you don’t, you can end up causing more headaches and backpedaling later on.