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John Payne

President, VICI Properties

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When the real estate investment trust (REIT) business turned its sights on gaming, things happened quickly. Three REITs were quickly spun off from existing companies—GLPI from Penn Entertainment, MGM Growth Properties from MGM Resorts and VICI from Caesars Entertainment. Last year, VICI swallowed MGM Growth and now is the largest landowner on the Las Vegas Strip. VICI President John Payne previously worked as an executive with Caesars, and knows casino operations like the back of his hand. He explains how VICI approaches its REIT deals with casino operators, which now includes most MGM and Caesars properties, as well as the Venetian and Palazzo. He spoke with GGB Publisher Roger Gros from his office in August.

Roger Gros is publisher of Global Gaming Business, the industry's leading gaming trade publication, and all its related publications. Prior to joining Global Gaming Business, Gros was president of Inlet Communications, an independent consulting firm. He was vice president of Casino Journal Publishing Group from 1984-2000, and held virtually every editorial title during his tenure. Gros was editor of Casino Journal, the National Gaming Summary and the Atlantic City Insider, and was the founding editor of Casino Player magazine. He was a co-founder of the American Gaming Summit and the Southern Gaming Summit conferences and trade shows. He is the author of the best-selling book, How to Win at Casino Gambling (Carlton Books, 1995), now in its fourth edition. Gros was named "Businessman of the Year" for 1998 by the Greater Atlantic City Chamber of Commerce, and received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Gaming Association in 2012.