Las Vegas Sands Q2 loss widens sharply

July 31, 2009
Singapore Democrats

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RTT News

Casino operator Las Vegas Sands Corp. said Thursday after the markets closed that its second quarter loss widened sharply from last year, hurt by difficult operating conditions, a legal settlement, a hefty impairment loss and higher depreciation and amortization expenses. However, the company’s quarterly adjusted earnings per share came in above analysts’ expectations.

The Las Vegas, Nevada-based company reported a GAAP net loss attributable to common shareholders for the second quarter of $222.2 million or $0.34 per share, compared to a GAAP net loss attributable to common shareholders of $8.8 million or $0.02 per share for the year-ago quarter.

The latest quarter results include a non-cash impairment loss of $151.2 million, related to a reduction in the expected proceeds to be received from the company’s sale of The Shoppes at The Palazzo, and the decision to delay indefinitely its plan to expand the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas.

Excluding items, adjusted net income for the second quarter was $8.8 million or $0.01 per share, compared to $30.9 million or $0.09 per share in the prior year quarter.

On average, 14 analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected the company to report a loss of $0.01 per share for the second quarter. Analysts’ estimates typically exclude special items.

Net revenue for the second quarter fell 4.8% to $1.06 billion from $1.11 billion in the same quarter last year. Eleven analysts had a consensus revenue estimate of $1.08 billion for the second quarter.

Sheldon Adelson, Las Vegas Sands chairman and CEO, said, “While our operating results reflect the challenging economic environment, we remain pleased that our properties in both Las Vegas and Macau continue to generate solid cash flow.”

Casino revenue for the quarter declined to $798.05 million from $804.27 million a year ago, while rooms revenue dropped to $161.97 million from $195.69 million last year.

Las Vegas Sands owns and operates The Venetian Resort-Hotel-Casino, The Palazzo Resort-Hotel-Casino, and the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas and the Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem in Eastern Pennsylvania. The company also owns and operates The Venetian Macao Resort-Hotel and the Sands Macao in the Chinese gambling enclave of Macau.

Net revenue from the company’s Las Vegas operations fell 16.5% to $291.0 million in the second quarter from $348.4 million in the second quarter of last year. Casino revenue declined 5.8% to $119.1 million from $126.5 million last year, while rooms revenue dropped 20.8% to $112.8 million from $142.4 million a year earlier.

Occupancy, average daily rate and revenue per available room were all down at both The Venetian Las Vegas and The Palazzo. Like many casino operators, the company’s Las Vegas operations has been hit especially hard by the recession due to lower traffic, shorter stay and decreased spending by the visitors.

Net revenue from from Venetian Macao operations fell 10.2% to $443.2 million, while that from Sands Macao declined 12.7% to $234.2 million.

For the first six months of the year, the company reported a GAAP net loss attributable to common shareholders of $303.1 million or $0.46 per share, compared to a GAAP net loss attributable to common shareholders of $20.0 million or $0.06 per share for the same period last year.

Adjusted net income for the first-half was $17.7 million or $0.03 per share, compared to $54.4 million or $0.15 per share in the prior year period.

Net revenue for the first -half fell to $2.14 billion from $2.19 billion in the corresponding year-ago period.

Additionally, the company said it continues to consider and evaluate itsr business strategy and future plans relating to its Macau operations, and may seek to access public or private capital markets to raise financing, which may include the sale of a minority stake in those operations.

The company targets open its Marina Bay Sands casino in Singapore in the first quarter of 2010.

Earlier today, Wynn Resorts Ltd. reported second quarter profit that fell sharply from last year, hurt by lower casino revenue while the year-ago results included a hefty tax benefit. However, the company’s quarterly earnings per share, excluding items, came in above analysts’ expectations.

Las Vegas Sands shares, which have traded in a range of $1.38 to $59.17 over the past year, closed Thursday’s regular trading session at $11.15, up 95 cents or 9.31% but lost $1.18 or 10.58% in after hours trading.

http://www.tradingmarkets.com/.site/news/TOP%20STORY/2452727/