The global pandemic shows no signs of slowing and Canadian casinos are feeling the financial pinch of forced closures across the nation’s provinces.
The Great Canadian Gaming Corporation (GCGC)-owned Casino Nova Scotia in Halifax is the latest victim of the economic catastrophe and finally shut down on April 22 amid a fresh lockdown order from the provincial government.
Other land-based casinos and gaming venues are also teetering on the precipice of ruin due to numerous openings and closures since COVID-19 first emerged in March 2020. Casino Nova Scotia spent most of last year with its doors closed and only got the go-ahead to reopen in January of 2021, but this proved to be too little, too late.
The most recent lockdown orders will not apply to Casino Nova Scotia Sydney as they are only targeted at businesses in the Halifax Regional Municipality, leaving the Sydney-based venue to freely operate for now.
Great Canadian Gaming’s interim CEO, Terrance Doyle, weighed in on the sombre news, saying that the company is eager to resume business at all its venues across the provinces. Doyle added that the organization is formulating a safe re-opening strategy to guarantee sustainable operations in a changing world.
Doyle pointed out that thousands of GCGC’s employees are without income at the moment and that reopening with an intensified focus on health and protocols is of utmost importance.
Two still stand
With the wave of recent closures affecting its Elements Casino Brantford and Shorelines Casino Thousand Island, the corporation is only left with 2 of its 26 Canadian venues still open and operational.
The two Ontario venues shut doors on March 21 after a provincial ban on social convenings, joining Shorelines Slots at Kawartha Downs and Shorelines Casino Peterborough. This leaves the company with only Casino Nova Scotia Sydney and Casino New Brunswick still running.