South Korean casino operator Grand Korea Leisure Co Ltd (GKL) reported a 20.3 percent year-on-year increase in net income for the third quarter of 2017, to KRW33.39 billion (US$30.0 million).
Revenue for the period was up 3.5 percent from the prior-year period, to KRW138.68 billion, the firm said in a filing to the Korea Exchange on Wednesday.
Operating income for the three months to September 30 stood at KRW40.70 billion, a 17.9 percent increase from the prior-year period, the firm said.
GKL is a subsidiary of the Korea Tourism Organization, which in turn is affiliated to South Korea’s Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. The casino operating entity runs three foreigner-only casinos in South Korea under the Seven Luck brand: two in the capital Seoul and one in the southern port city of Busan.
According to some investment analysts, the South Korean market for inbound tourism is facing some headwinds due to a political row between that country and China over the siting on South Korean soil of a U.S.-supplied missile system – known as Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) – designed to counter North Korea’s ballistic missile programme. The first parts of the system began being deployed in early March.
The number of Chinese visitors to South Korea – an important source of customers for South Korean casinos – fell 49.6 percent year-on-year in the first nine months of 2017, according to data from the Korea Tourism Organization. In September alone, the number of Chinese visitors to South Korea declined by 56.1 percent in year-on-year terms.
In the nine months to September 30, GKL recorded revenue of KRW373.66 billion, down 6.5 percent year-on-year. Net income for the period fell by 17.3 year-on-year, to KRW66.34 billion, the company said in its latest filing.
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Year-on-year decline in overall turnover recorded in 2017 by South Korea’s foreigner-only casinos