Las Vegas Sands

Las Vegas Sands is a US casino group, with resorts in the United States and Asia, including two luxury resorts on the Las Vegas Strip. In Asia, it owns the Marina Bay Sands in california, and several properties in Macau. Sands China’s assets include The Venetian Macao, Sands Macao and The Plaza Macao.


Macau unit powers jump in Sands profit

Income more than doubled and casino firm expects strong growth to continue

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 25 July, 2013, 8:52am
UPDATED : Thursday, 29 August, 2013, 4:13am

Las Vegas Sands' success continued in Macau, helping it more than double its net income in the second quarter. But growth was tepid in Las Vegas, and Wall Street expected stronger results overall.

Revenue rose 40 per cent at Sands China, the company's Macau division, while profit more than tripled.

Known for its high-roller gamblers and a growing base of middle-class Chinese visitors, Macau is the world's largest gaming market and the only place in China where casino gambling is legal.

Chief executive Sheldon Adelson on Wednesday brushed off concerns that the Macau juggernaut might one day peter out as economic growth slows in China.

"Consumer behaviour is going in the right direction, as far as we're concerned. We have more people coming in spending more money," Adelson said.

Revenue at Sands' flagship Asian casino, Venetian Macao, rose 38 per cent, helped by a 43 per cent growth in gaming revenue. Spring and summer visitors to Sands' five Macau properties grew 40 per cent from a year ago.

But revenue per available room (revpar), a key industry measure, fell 1 per cent at the Venetian Macao from a year ago.

Adelson, whose success in Macau has made him the ninth-richest person in the US, according to Forbes, said he expected far more visitors in the years to come. "It's the infrastructure that is holding up a tremendous increase in potential attendance," he said. "The further out the tentacles reach with high-speed rails, the more visitation."

Sands, the largest US casino company, has other problems in Macau aside from worries about economic growth slowing.

The company is under investigation by the United States Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission. The inquiries stem from a pending wrongful-termination case brought by a former Sands executive who claims that Sands' China subsidiary did business with gangsters, tacitly condoned prostitution and made inappropriate payments to a lawyer who was also a Macau lawmaker.

Sands has denied all claims, but recently said in a regulatory filing an examination of its books had turned up possible breaches of a federal anti-corruption act.

In the US, sales rose less than 6 per cent at the company's two Las Vegas casinos, the Venetian and the Palazzo.

The company said spending on food and drinks in its Las Vegas Strip properties fell 2 per cent, while gaming revenue, buoyed by the Asian favourite baccarat, grew 11 per cent. Revpar rose 7 per cent.

Sands said it earned US$529.8 million, or 64 US cents per share, in the quarter, up from US$240.6 million, or 29 US cents per share previously. Revenue grew 26 per cent to US$3.24 billion.

Adjusting to exclude one-time items, it earned US$540.6 million, or 65 cents US per share, up from US$365.3 million, or 44 US cents per share.


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