Trump Entertainment Resorts Inc. has appointed a veteran gambling executive as the new general manager of the struggling Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino.
Mario DiGuiseppe steps in at the same time Trump Entertainment is trying to sell Trump Plaza. The California-based Meruelo Group has agreed to buy the casino for $20 million, but billionaire investor Carl Icahn is blocking the sale. Icahn, who holds the mortgage on the Trump casinos, believes the Plaza’s sale price is too low and refuses to approve the deal.
It was not immediately clear whether DiGuiseppe’s appointment is permanent or on an interim basis. Trump Entertainment has not made an official announcement and did not return messages Monday seeking comment. However, the New Jersey Casino Control Commission confirmed DiGuiseppe’s new role at Trump Plaza.
“We have been informed that Mr. DiGuiseppe is the new general manager,” commission spokesman Daniel Heneghan said.
DiGuiseppe identifies himself as “general manager at Trump Plaza” in his profile for LinkedIn , a website for professional networking. He replaces Eddie Llambias , who had served as Trump Plaza’s general manager since February 2011 but left this month to become vice president and general manager of the Bally’s Casino in Tunica, Miss.
At Trump Plaza, DiGuiseppe will oversee an aging Boardwalk property that finished last in gambling revenue in 2012 among Atlantic City’s dozen casinos. The Plaza’s revenue plunged 25 percent for the year, to just $102.5 million.
Trump Entertainment has moved DiGuiseppe over from its flagship casino, Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort. Most recently, he had served as the Taj Mahal’s vice president of casino operations.
Over the years, he has held a number of executive positions at casinos in Atlantic City, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Mississippi and Indiana, according to his online biography.
DiGuiseppe’s management experience in the Atlantic City gambling industry began in 1981 as a floor supervisor at the old Sands Casino Hotel, his bio shows.
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