Hong Kong-listed Summit Ascent Holdings Ltd, an investor in the Tigre de Cristal casino resort (pictured), at Primorye near the Russian Pacific port of Vladivostok, confirmed on Tuesday that it swung to a HKD16.1-million (US$2.1-million) loss in the first half to June 30, compared to a HKD85.2-million profit in the prior-year period. It had warned last week about the currency-exchange matter.
First-half revenue from gaming and hotel operations at Tigre de Cristal rose 2.3 percent year-on-year, to HKD182.0 million. Revenue from gaming operations for the period was flat, at HKD167.3 million, compared to HKD167.6 million in the first six months of 2022.
The firm also affirmed to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange that the main reason for the overall loss was “the recognition of exchange losses of approximately HKD35.2 million caused by the fluctuation of the Russian ruble exchange rate, whereas exchange gains of approximately HKD157.1 million were recognised in the first half 2022”.
No dividend was paid or proposed for ordinary shareholders of the company regarding the first six months of this year.
Half-year adjusted earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) at Tigre de Cristal actually fell 5.0 percent year-on-year, to HKD57.0 million.
For the first half last year, Summit Ascent mentioned its profit generated by Tigre de Cristal had been mainly due to business from Russian domestic customers.
The firm said for first half this year, it had also focused on the Russian consumer market and Russian supply chains and logistics, noting that foreign tourism to the Russian Federation having “collapsed since early 2022” amid the “ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict”.
The gaming and hotel operations of Summit Ascent are conducted through its 77.5 percent equity interest in an entity called Oriental Regent Ltd. The group also receives a management fee income calculated at 3 percent of the total net gaming revenue generated by G1 Entertainment LLC a wholly-owned subsidiary of Oriental Regent. G1 Entertainment holds a gaming licence for Tigre de Cristal granted by the Russian government.
For the reporting period, Summit Ascent had just under HKD51.2 million in interest income from derivative financial instruments, relating to a lending arrangement for Suntrust Resort Holdings Inc. The latter is developing a casino hotel at the Westside City project in Manila, the Philippine capital.
Suntrust is indirectly controlled by casino project developer, Hong Kong-listed LET Group Holdings Ltd. The latter also controls Summit Ascent.
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