Macau casino operator MGM China Holdings Ltd on Wednesday said its shareholders had approved a final dividend of HKD0.160 (US$0.0205) per share for the year ended December 31, 2016. The final dividend, amounting to approximately HKD608 million in aggregate, is expected to be paid on June 16, the company had said in a previous filing.
Hong Kong-listed MGM China said the final dividend represented nearly 20 percent of the firm’s profit attributable to its owners for the year ended December 31, 2016. Together with an interim dividend of approximately HKD452.2 million in aggregate, MGM China said it distributed about 34.9 percent of the firm’s net profit for full-year 2016.
Net income attributable to MGM China’s owners was down by 2.4 percent from the prior year to approximately HKD3.04 billion in 2016. U.S.-based casino operator MGM Resorts International controls a 56-percent stake in MGM China.
Japanese brokerage Nomura said earlier this month that it expected MGM China to contribute higher dividends to MGM Resorts in 2018 following the opening of MGM Cotai this year. The HKD26-billion MGM Cotai is likely to open in the fourth quarter of 2017.
At Wednesday’s annual general meeting, shareholders also approved the re-election of Pansy Ho Chiu King as an executive director of MGM China. Ms Ho holds a 22.49-percent stake in MGM China.
In a separate development, MGM Resorts said on Wednesday that Tracinda Corp is reducing further its stake in the Las Vegas-based casino operator. Tracinda – the fund managing the capital accumulated by the late entrepreneur Kirk Kerkorian – is selling the stake for US$31.25 per share.
The transaction is expected to be completed on Thursday, MGM Resorts said in a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission. The sale will reduce Tracinda’s stake in MGM Resorts to 9.9 percent.
In 2015, Tracinda had the largest single holding in MGM Resorts – a 16.19-percent stake – but Mr Kerkorian gave orders in his will for the fund to sell the entire stake in the Las Vegas-based casino and hotel operator.
In 2016, Ms Ho had acquired 4 million shares of MGM Resorts stock at US$25.00 per share from Tracinda. Following the completion of that deal, Ms Ho was said to hold a stake of approximately 4.8 percent in MGM Resorts.
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Analyst at Morningstar Asia