The management of Solaire Resort and Casino in the Philippine capital Manila is “optimistic that its brand and market leadership in the industry should allow it to regain the trust of patrons and guests as they adjust to a ‘new normal’,” said a Friday note from Nomura Group research.
Bloomberry Resorts operates Solaire Resort and Casino (pictured) via its Bloomberry Resorts and Hotels Inc unit.
Bloomberry had been focusing on “sanitation initiatives” and repairs and maintenance, as well as installing “necessary equipment” to ensure the safety of Solaire’s facilities when it reopens, added analysts Diane Go and Thomas Huang at Nomura’s unit BDO Nomura Securities Inc.
Though they added the “visibility over timing and extent of recovery remains limited at this point”.
Solaire, along with other large-scale private-sector casinos in the Entertainment City zone in Manila, has been shuttered since mid-March due to the Metro Manila lockdown, which was subsequently extended in increments. It is poised to run in a modified form until at least the end of this month. Some essential services, but not bricks and mortar casinos, have been allowed to restart.
Macau adopted social distancing steps on its casino floors after a 15-day shutdown in February to stop the spread locally of the novel coronavirus and its associated Covid-19 infection. Such steps have also been proposed for bricks and mortar casinos in the United States.
“Bloomberry aims to restart approximately 20 percent of its gaming capacity once the lockdown is lifted” in Metro Manila, “but this will greatly depend on the government allowing casinos to operate,” noted the brokerage, echoing comments made to local media in April by Enrique Razon, the chairman of Bloomberry, who had referred to the need for physical distancing.
First-quarter net income at Bloomberry declined by 37.7 percent year-on-year, while net revenue contracted by 12.5 percent, said the company on May 14, citing the “economic and tourism implications” arising from the Covid-19 pandemic as a major reason.
The brokerage said, citing company data and Nomura estimates, that it was currently forecasting Bloomberry’s 2020 revenue to be PHP26.19 billion (US$515.3 million) versus nearly PHP46.34 billion last year.
The institution said Bloomberry’s earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) might be nearly PHP10.38 billion, compared to PHP19.54 billion last year.
Assuming the casino group’s fixed cost at around PHP7 billion, “management estimates EBITDA to break even at approximately PHP18 billion in revenues,” stated the institution.
“The current cash balance of PHP37.7 billion appears healthy, in our view, which effectively equates to almost 11 months’ worth of revenues,” added BDO Nomura.
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