Casino operator Genting Singapore's first-quarter earnings grew significantly, partly due to selling its stake in a resort in Jeju, South Korea.
Net profit soared to $181.1 million for the three months to March 31, from just $10.8 million in the same period a year earlier. First-quarter revenue slipped 4 per cent to $586.6 million, as gaming and non-gaming turnover fell year on year.
Genting Singapore said yesterday it completed the sale of its 50 per cent interest in the Jeju integrated resort on Jan 3. This translated into a gain of $96.3 million.
Adjusted Ebitda (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) jumped 47 per cent year on year "on the back of improvement in operating margins arising from cost-efficiency initiatives and substantially lower impairment in receivables", it added.
Quarter-on-quarter revenue grew 5 per cent as gaming turnover recorded "a healthy increase" of more than 8 per cent to $434.4 million, "underpinned by strong performance from VIP gaming business and premium mass business".
It added that Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) has been bringing in "more than one-third of international visitor arrivals annually". Also, Universal Studios Singapore received its 25 millionth visitor, and SEA Aquarium its 10 millionth, during the quarter.
AT A GLANCE
NET PROFIT $181.1 million
REVENUE $586.6million (-4%)
Genting Singapore said: "These two milestone events are a testament to RWS' market-leading position in the region's travel and leisure market. Our integrated resort hotels have continued to outperform industrywide matrices with consistently high room occupancy rates of over 92 per cent."
It added that it would remain focused on growing the premium mass market.
It said: "All our efforts in the gaming and non-gaming segments have shown encouraging response from our targeted market segments, and we are optimistic in delivering sustainable earnings growth.
"We are continuing with our growth and diversification plan and are allocating resources in tandem with the progress of the Japan IR (integrated resort) Execution Bill, which will pave the way for the formal bidding process of the Japan gaming licences."
Quarterly earnings per share was 1.51 cents, compared with 0.09 cent a year ago, while net asset value per share was 61.5 cents as at March 31, from 60.1 cents as at Dec 31 last year. Its shares closed flat at $1.08 before the results were released.