Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd, the venture of billionaire James Packer and a son of casino mogul Stanley Ho, said profit was little changed in the fourth quarter, hurt by costs for a Philippines project.
Net income rose to USD108 million from USD107.5 million a year earlier, according to a statement to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Revenue increased 9.3 percent to USD1.1 billion, compared with the USD1.06 billion average of estimates compiled by Bloomberg.
The gain shows Melco’s flagship City of Dreams casino and rivals on the city’s Cotai strip are drawing mass-market gamblers to the more recently developed part of Macau. Sands China Ltd last week reported a 52 percent jump in quarterly profit driven by its Sands Cotai Central resort, which opened in April on the strip of reclaimed land.
Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd is also competing on the strip for China’s middle-class bettors, while higher-stakes gambling, also known as the VIP business, is recovering. Adjusted property earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation, or Ebitda, climbed 6.9 percent to $247.5 million, Melco Crown said. That compares with a median estimate of $250.5 million from six analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News. Stanley Ho’s son Lawrence is the chief executive officer of the company.
Melco Crown’s American depositary receipts fell 3.6 percent to $19.90 at 8:18 a.m. New York time, before the markets opened. The stock has risen 20 percent this year in Hong Kong, outperforming Sands China’s 6.9 percent and Galaxy’s 8.7 percent gains. The benchmark Hang Seng Index climbed 2.7 percent in the period. Melco last week completed a $1.4 billion syndicated loan to help finance its upcoming Studio City project on Macau’s Cotai strip. The company also raised USD825 million in a bond sale in November.