Macau revenue declines continue
August 01, 2016 10:52 AM
by Phil Hevener
Macau casino revenues declined for the 26th consecutive month during July but the 4.5 dip compared to the same month a year ago was the best performance since the market began to contract under pressure from the gtovernment.
Analysts and company officials jumped on the July numbers, a win of $2.2 billion by the six companies with concessions there, as the best sign in months that better times are ahead.
The apparent leveling off the steady decreases in revenue could not come at a better time for the three Las Vegas-based companies preparing for the opening of resorts that will feature more diversified amenities than in the past when the near total focus was on casino performance.
The $4.2 billion Wynn Palace will open Aug. 22 and the Las Vegas Sands’s Parisian with its half-scale replica of the Eiffel Tower will open about three weeks beyond that.
Continuing government pressure to de-emphasize casino revenue and to approve fewer table games than the operators asked for has produced a flurry of hard-nosed cost analysis that boils down to casinos re-examining their business models and cost structures.
But the top officials in both companies seemed to agree during recent conversations with analysts that better times, or perhaps improving times are ahead.
“We think the industry is stabilizing” with the new openings by mid-September to attract mass market tourists, Macau legislator Jose Coutinho said in an interview with Bloomberg Television. Macau still has potential to attract Chinese visitors as it’s the closest place to mainland China where gambling is legal, he said.