MGM China adjusted EBITDA up 39pct

MGM China recorded some HK$1.5 billion (US$191.4 million) in adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) in the third quarter of this year, a 39 per cent year-on-year increase, as its MGM Cotai continues to ramp up. Meanwhile, the group’s total

revenue went up 22 per cent year-on-year in the same period to HK$5.8 billion.

Sands China net revenue drops 2pct

Sands China’s net revenue dropped 2 per cent year-on-year to US$2.11 billion (MOP17 billion) in the third quarter, as VIP showed poorer results in the group’s properties. According to the group, its VIP

rolling volume went down 30.5 per cent year-on-year to US$14.5 billion. Net revenues from The Venetian

went down slightly by 0.7 per cent year-on-year to US$851 million in the third quarter, while Sands Cotai saw a 9.3 per cent drop to US$487 million and The Parisian a 2.1 per cent fall to US$381 million. VIP still falling, mass still growing VIP gross gaming revenues –

represented by VIP baccarat – dropped 22.4 per cent year-on-year to about MOP31 billion (US$3.8 billion) in the third quarter, while revenue generated by casino mass market table and machine games went up 17.6 per cent to MOP39.7

billion, data released by the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) revealed. Accumulated VIP baccarat

revenues dropped 17 per cent year- on-year in the first nine months of this year to some MOP102.9 billion, while mass-market casino gaming went up by some 18 per cent to MOP117.9 billion. Just considering mass baccarat,

results went up 20.5 per cent year-on-year to MOP30.5 billion between July and September of this year.

Meg-Star threatens HK casino financing company

Junket operator Meg-Star Group issued a statement in which it stated that a Hong Kong-based company named Philia Wealth Group has falsely claimed business ties to the group to promote its own business activities and that it would contemplate pursuing litigation against this company. According to a message by its

President, Yang Youn Jik, on the company’s website, Philia Wealth claims to have developed a new casino-financing business model, creating special casino financing projects involving shared luxury spaces designed for the resort and cruise casino business for its Asian members. The website also states the

company is based in Hong Kong and has business interests in casino equipment planning,

manufacturing, sales, leasing, and OEM as well as related consulting services, and in casino and junket operations, citing Meg-Star as one of its partners.

Melco profits more than double

Game operator Melco Resorts & Entertainment posted operating income of US$175.2 million (MOP1.4 billion) in the third quarter of the year, more than double year-on-year. Between July and September last

year, the group led by Lawrence Ho had achieved operating profits of US$85.9 million (MOP687.2 million). The group’s operating revenues

from casinos and hotels in Macau and the Philippines were US$1.44 billion (MOP11.52 billion), up 16 percent from the third quarter of last year. According to the group’s

statement, in the third quarter Melco posted adjusted EBITDA of US$418.2 million (MOP3.345 billion), a 39% increase over to the same period of 2018.

Judge orders Sheldon Adelson to pay compensation

The Chairman and CEO of Sands China Ltd., Sheldon G. Adelson, has been ordered by a US federal judge to pay compensatory damages and legal fees to the National Jewish Democratic Council (NJDC) for using ‘legal sadism’ to disband the

organisation, Courthouse News reported. According to the report, Adelson had sued the NJDC in 2012 over an online petition launched by the group and urging Republicans not to take money from the businessman. Adelson is a known Republican

funder and the largest backer of US President Donald Trump. The petition was said to have included a link to an Associated Press story at the time which reported a lawsuit by former Sands executive, Steven Jacobs, which allegedly had his contract terminated for refusing to allow prostitutes in the group’s hotels.

MOP394.1 million in taxes on junket commissions

The government has received MOP394.1 million (US$48.8 million) in taxes on commissions paid by casinos to junket operators in 2018, a 17 per cent year-on-year rise, according to the last year’s budget execution report. Junket operators usually either

receive a share of the revenue by casinos or a commission no higher than 1.25 per cent on rolling chip turnover. In total, the Macau government

collected around MOP106.5 billion in gaming taxes, a 13.6 per cent increase from the year prior, with that amount representing 82.1 per cent of the MOP115.9 billion in total government revenue.

24 DECEMBER 2019

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