Kangwon Land Inc – operator of Kangwon Land (pictured), a resort with the only casino in South Korea permitted to serve local players – reported a net profit attributable to shareholders of KRW37.55 billion (US$28.8 million) for the second quarter. That was up 79.6 percent from a year earlier, according to a filing to the Korea Exchange on Friday.
The second-quarter result was a turnaround from the KRW5.85-billion loss recorded in the first three months this year.
Kangwon Land saw an operating profit of KRW69.95 billion in the three months to June 30, relative to an operating profit of KRW2.70 billion in the prior-year period. Operating profit was up 564.3 percent quarter-on-quarter, said the company.
The casino operator’s sales for the three months to June 30 reached KRW311.52 billion, up 37.3 percent sequentially, and an increase of 53.0 percent from a year earlier.
Gaming sales in the second quarter stood at KRW280.10 billion, up 52.4 percent from the prior-year period. Measured sequentially, second-quarter gaming sales were up 45.7 percent.
Gross gaming revenue (GGR) for the quarter to June rose by 51.5 percent year-on-year, to KRW308.80 billion.
Of the second-quarter GGR, a total of KRW140.10 billion came from mass gaming tables, and another KRW133.60 billion came from slot machines.
Both segments saw year-on-year growth that far outpaced the overall increase in GGR, which was dragged down by the gaming revenue generated at the property’s ‘Membership Club’ – a reference to a facility for premium players – which only reached KRW35.00 billion in the second quarter, down 25.5 percent year-on-year.
Mass GGR, including slot games, made ‘an impressive recovery to 90 percent-plus” of pre-pandemic level, said a Friday note from JP Morgan Securities (Asia Pacific) Ltd.
This was “despite the fact that Covid-related curbs were only fully lifted in mid-May, while VIP GGR stayed weaker at approximately 60 percent” of pre-pandemic levels, stated analysts DS Kim and Livy Lyu.
During the reporting period, Kangwon Land received 492,971 visitors, up 147.2 percent year-on-year, according to the firm’s detailed results, posted on its website. Kangwon Land’s visitors were mostly locals.
Gaming operations at Kangwon Land returned to 20-hours-per-day from April 18, as local rules on social distancing to counter the spread of Covid-19 were eased. From mid-May, standing bets were again permitted and restrictions on the number of patrons were also lifted, said the casino firm.
(Updated 9.26am, August 15)
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