VIP gambling rolling chip volume at Cambodian casino operator NagaCorp Ltd rose 34 percent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2017, said the Hong Kong-listed firm.
According to unaudited highlights published in Hong Kong on Monday regarding the firm’s operations for the period, such VIP volume was US$3.73 billion for the three months to March 31, compared to nearly US$2.79 billion in the prior-year period.
Buy-in for mass-market table play rose 13 percent during the period, to just under US$169.4 million, from just shy of US$149.9 million in first-quarter 2016.
The bills-in tally for electronic gaming machines expanded by 10 percent year-on-year, to nearly US$417.3 million, from just under US$381.1 million previously.
Hong Kong-listed NagaCorp operates NagaWorld (pictured), the only casino resort in Cambodia’s capital, Phnom Penh.
Commenting on the first-quarter unaudited highlights, brokerage Union Gaming Securities Asia Ltd said in a memo the same day: “It is important to note that VIP volume of US$3.7-billion was up against a +65 percent comparison from first-quarter 2016.”
The VIP volume in first-quarter 2016 had previously been “the highest NagaCorp had ever achieved in any given quarter,” added analyst Grant Govertsen.
“The departure of Macau’s Jimei junket at the end of January clearly didn’t impact volumes,” added the Union Gaming analyst. He was referring to Hong Kong-listed junket investor Jimei International Entertainment Group Ltd. It announced in its own full-year results on March 29 the end of a partnership with NagaCorp for the promotion of gaming tables at NagaWorld.
Union Gaming said that in the light of NagaCorp’s first-quarter VIP numbers, the brokerage was increasing its full-year VIP volume forecast for the company by seven percentage points, to 20 percent year-on-year, while maintaining its full-year mass table games and slot machine revenue forecasts at +11 percent year-on-year and +15 percent, respectively.
The brokerage also increased slightly its forecast for the firm’s 2017 earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation, to US$274 million.
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