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Industry experts take a look at 2018

We asked experts from various Las Vegas industries to tell us how their businesses will be affected in 2018. Here are some of there responses:

“Las Vegas industry leaders are very positive about 2018. Many venues in the city are growing the size of their meeting space to accommodate the increase in demand of meetings and conventions. This allows for a solid business base for hotel occupancies many months and years in advance. Convention business brings confirmed food and beverage spending, which is a great story all the way around for our properties. The tourism industry already is a major contributor to the employment in the state with hundreds of thousands of jobs supported by the tourism industry. Unemployment in the city should most likely be at our lowest historical percentage in the near future. Las Vegas is known for re-inventing itself and 2018 and beyond will bring exciting new entertainment through the addition of new sports teams. This will provide additional entertainment choices in our city that are now layered on the traditional shows, concerts, fight events and residencies. This is providing more reasons to visit Las Vegas and potentially extend a stay to include a sports event. The anticipated development on the north end of the Strip will also create a dynamic and energized market for an influx of new visitors. We are all very optimistic about the future of the Las Vegas hospitality industry.”

Diane Gandy, president, Nevada Hotel and Lodging Association

“With construction and land costs on the rise, building new high-rise residential product in Southern Nevada is becoming more cost prohibitive for condo developers. Simultaneously, new single family home inventory is diminishing due to strong sales in recent years. As a result, I believe 2018 is an opportune time to purchase an affordable high-rise condo in Las Vegas – while there are still affordable high-rises to be had. And with the addition of professional sports, our city’s already strong appeal has increased exponentially, adding to the quality of life for which our market is known.”

— Uri Vaknin, Partner, KRE Capital LLC

“This year marked an important milestone for the cannabis industry in Las Vegas, but there is much more growth to come in 2018. Now that the industry is established and recreational sales are well on their way, consumers are learning what is available to them. In 2018 we will start to see this market mature and bring about more educated customers. Tourists also will play a significant role in market growth as more and more visitors learn that marijuana is now recreational in our city. The new year will also bring more dispensaries online, making branding even more critical in the cannabis industry as businesses make an effort to leave a mark in this new evolving industry.”

— Demetri Kouretas, CEO of The Grove

“The members of the CEO Exchange represent the largest social service providers in Southern Nevada, and the Oct. 1 tragedy will have lasting impacts for next year and many years beyond. One of the most glaring impacts will be in dealing with psychological trauma, particularly because our community lacks sufficient access to mental health services already. Other communities experiencing mass tragedies are still coping with long-term effects; and access to mental health services, in particular, are critical. While many affected by the shooting were from other states — presenting its own challenges in tracking treatment — a large number are local. Nevada ranks 38th and 47th in the country for the number of psychiatry and psychology professionals, and there is uncertainty regarding the Affordable Care Act and future of Medicare and Medicaid funding for these services. Even if Nevada had ample psychological and social services resources, the scope of the Las Vegas shooting would deplete them. During the next year, we must address the immediate needs and we must address solutions for the future.”

— Brian Knudsen, CEO Exchange, Southern Nevada Nonprofit Leaders

“As our community continues to grow, Three Square expects that 2018 will be a year of need and opportunity. One out of seven people in Southern Nevada worry about their next meal. We will increase our focus on rescuing nutritious food from the retail and hospitality sectors in order to meet strong demand from agency partners. Donations are expected to remain even from 2017 with more pressure from government sources due to the uncertainty of reform and budgetary initiatives. We expect our volunteer platform to exceed a record 37,000 people as the community continues to be engaged and passionate about feeding our neighbors in need.”

— Brian Burton, President & CEO of Three Square

“As we head into 2018, our new Clubhouse will open as a community collaboration with Lutheran Social Services of Nevada and Nevada HAND in an underserved area in the east valley. This Boys & Girls Club will provide a safe place for more than 200 kids, ages 5 to 18, who will participate in fun and engaging activities and programs by our youth development professionals. We begin our 59th year serving more than 20,000 children annually in Southern Nevada, enabling them to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens. After an extensive peer assessment from Boys & Girls Clubs of America, our continuous quality improvement model will better serve our Club kids with daily homework help, career development, an activity-based STEM curriculum, athletics and the arts. We expect our graduation rate of high school members

and enrollment in post-secondary education and military services to continue to soar and will work to raise more than the $120,000 in college scholarships awarded to teen members in 2017. We continue to be grateful for the community that supports our mission, board of directors for their valuable time and resources, and also our alumni from our Clubs for sharing their stories of success and gratitude.”

Andy Bischel, president and CEO, Boys & Girls Clubs of Southern Nevada

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