Slot machine supplier Aristocrat Leisure Ltd said its business performance in the Asia Pacific region was “strong” in financial year 2015.
“Asia Pacific performance was strong, driven by new [property] openings in Macau, where market leading ship share was achieved together with increased expansion activity outside of Macau,” the firm said in its annual report filed with the Australian Securities Exchange last week.
The firm had already announced its preliminary results for fiscal 2015 in November.
Two large new gaming facilities were opened in Macau either during Aristocrat Leisure’s financial reporting period, or shortly after it. They were Galaxy Entertainment Group’s Galaxy Macau Phase 2 on May 27, and Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd’s majority owned Studio City on November 27.
Aristocrat Leisure added in its annual report: “[The] Good Fortune link with over 800 shipments throughout the Asia Pacific region continues to perform above floor [average] in all venues.”
Aristocrat Leisure additionally said there was “strong interest across all markets” for premium content on its slot cabinet range, including the Wonder Wheels, Behemoth, Arc Single and Arc Double cabinets.
Behemoth – with its 84-inch (213-centimetre) LCD monitor – was among the new products displayed at the Macao Gaming Show in November.
Aristocrat Leisure noted that in the reporting period to September 30, its international Class III revenue was “up 14.2 percent to AUD120.1 million [US$87.3 million] in constant currency terms,” driven by growth in Asia Pacific.
“Class III” is a definition used in U.S.-based jurisdictions to refer to slot games in U.S. commercial casinos, as opposed to Class II lottery-style games, which are more commonly found in tribal casinos.
Profit in the international Class III segment rose 3.9 percent year-on-year, to AUD43.0 million, although the segment’s margin fell by 3.6 percentage points.
In North America, “strong growth” had driven a AUD156.8-million improvement in post-tax profit compared to the prior period, which the firm said was “due to the inclusion of VGT Class II gaming operations, supported by improved outright sales share and significant share, fee per day and profit growth from our Class III premium gaming operations business”.
Video Gaming Technologies, also known as VGT, was acquired by Aristocrat Leisure in July 2014 for US$1.28 billion. VGT is a provider of gaming machines for the tribal gaming market in North America.
Aristocrat Leisure stated that while its business in Europe was stable, “margins were impacted by a weaker euro (versus British pound and U.S. dollar).”
In the Australia market, Aristocrat Leisure said it had achieved “significant share gains across key markets driven by the top performing Helix cabinet and strong performing new games”.
It added that its digital platform business “delivered strong earnings growth due to continued success on Facebook and the launch and growth of Heart of Vegas on mobile since the prior corresponding period”.
The firm additionally said that what it termed the “total target remuneration” of the firm’s chief executive Jamie Odell had risen by nearly a third during the reporting period, to AUD5.7 million, from AUD4.3 million in the prior period.
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"I am not going to speculate on what the [casino licence refreshment] tender requirements would be. I have full confidence and faith in the Macau government to treat everyone fairly"
Wilfred Wong Ying Wai
President and chief operating officer of Macau-based casino operator Sands China