[toc]Earlier this month, Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem President Mark Juliano shocked many in the industry by submitting his resignation.
The information was revealed in a memo sent by Las Vegas Sands Corp President and COO Robert Goldstein. According to The Morning Call, Goldstein sent the memo on Monday, July 17. Juliano’s resignation was effective immediately.
Here is an excerpt of that memo, as published in The Morning Call:
“Mark has been a valuable team member at both Marina Bay Sands in Singapore and as president of Sands Bethlehem. On behalf of the [Las Vegas Sands] management team, I would like to thank Mark for his many efforts and wish him and his family the very best.”
Failed MGM deal may have led to resignation
Juliano took over Sands in 2014. Over the course of about three years, he helped turn it into one of the state’s most profitable casinos.
His streak of good fortune, however, seemed to come to an end when three different forced converged to impact Sands negatively.
The casino was preparing to launch a $90 million upgrade slated to include new restaurants, slots, and table games. That plan was put on hold when Goldstein sent a letter notifying employees Sands was working with MGM Resorts International to sell Sands Bethlehem. According to industry experts, the sale price was more than $1 billion.
And though no specific reason has been given, that deal ultimately fell through. Juliano’s unexpected resignation makes it hard to believe he isn’t taking the punishment for the stymied sale.
Even that conclusion is hard to support because there hasn’t been a peep of explanation from Juliano, Sands, or MGM.
Juliano’s previously sterling resumé
Perhaps a good deal of the shock over Juliano’s resignation is that the former schoolteacher had done a much-praised job of vaulting the Sands into the upper echelon of Northeast casinos.
He led the campaign to build the nation’s largest electronic table games stadium. And as The Morning Call noted, “Juliano helped Sands Bethlehem … lure more cash-carrying millennials to the gambling floor.”
Juliano also brought in a celebrity chef and refurbished all of the Sands’ 302 hotel rooms, The Morning Call said.
Colleagues can’t believe Juliano stepped down
Several people who worked with Juliano expressed surprised that he stepped down.
Bethlehem’s mayor called the news of Juliano’s resignation unexpected, but he also told The Morning Call it will be business as usual.
Roger Hudak, who was chairman of Bethlehem’s South Side Task Force until February, was taken aback by the news.
“I thought he was doing a great job,” Hudak said. “His charge was to grow the business and he did that. I’m just not sure what’s going on over there anymore. I’m going to miss him.”
Brian Carr, Sands’ senior vice president of finance and administration, has replaced Juliano in the role of president.