Jumps in Hammond, Tunica boost Horseshoe Gaming report

Feb 19, 2002 5:39 AM

While concerns have arisen of late about the financial viability of the Horseshoe Casino in Downtown Las Vegas, no such fears have surrounded the activities of Jack Binion’s Horseshoe Gaming Holding Co. In fact, things have been flourishing for Jack’s enterprises.

For sister Becky Binion Behnen’s Downtown property, however, the problem of her $1.8 million delinquent dues complaint with the Fremont Experience remains unresolved.

On Friday, Jack Binion reported that Horseshoe Gaming Holding Corp., a privately-held company, earned $10.2 million during the fourth quarter of 2001. This compared with a net loss of $1.3 million for the final quarter of 2000.

The consolidated earnings included the results from the Empress Casino Joliet through July 2001 when Binion sold the riverboat to Argosy Gaming Inc. (AGY).

Contributing to the big numbers for the fourth quarter, the company said, were better weather experienced by its three properties in Tunica, Miss., Bossier City, La., and Hammond, Ind.

Net revenues increased 20% in Hammond and 7% in Tunica while a decline of 4% in Bossier City.

Isle of Capri

Isle of Capri Inc. (ISLE), the multi-diversified company with gaming operations in a half-dozen states, also reported a sharp turnaround in business with per share earnings rising to $0.27 a share compared to last year’s $0.10 a share.

In 2001, the company added the Lady Luck Hotel/Casino in Downtown Las Vegas to its inventory of gaming properties. The company also has 15 riverboat, dockside and land-based casinos at 14 locations in Mississippi, Louisiana, Colorado, Iowa, Missouri and Nevada. The company also operated harness racing at Pompano Park in Florida.

EBITDA, earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, increased to a record $56.9 million, easily surpassing last year’s $43.6 million.

“During the quarter,” said John M. Gallaway, president and COO, “we were able to maintain tight control over payroll expenses and actually decreased marketing expenditures 5% when compared with the prior year.”

Riviera Holdings

A slowdown caused by the September terrorists attacks contributed to a decline in net revenues for the Riviera Holdings Corporation (RIV). For the quarter ended on Dec. 31, 2001, net revenues dropped to $44 million from the previous year’s $49.5 million.

For the fiscal year, the company said, revenues were a shade better than the previous year, ending at $202 million. In the previous year, the revenues were listed at $201.5 million.

A decline in occupancy at the Riviera Las Vegas during the fourth quarter was a major factor in the reduced revenues, the company reported. The occupancy rate dropped from 91.6% to 78.4% for the period.

“Net revenues in Las Vegas were down $8.5 million or 21.4% for the quarter across all departments,” said Bob Vannucci, president of Riviera Las Vegas. Trump Hotels & Casinos

Increased revenues for the fourth quarter were reported by Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts Inc. (DJT).

During the period ended on Dec. 31, 2001, the company reported consolidated net revenues of $285.9 million compared to 2000’s $278 million.

For the year, the company said it experienced a net loss of $25.3 million or $1.15 a share. This was better than the comparable year when the net loss was $37.3 million or $1.69 per share.