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CR88-p95-Business7:SJC-Casino Review 21/1/10 19:12 Page 1
Italian casino revenues retreat
The four casinos in Italy all saw their annual gross gaming revenues
down in 2009. Casinò di Venezia, still the biggest earner, took
E164.4m but also saw the biggest fall, down 11.6 per cent.
Campione was down 2.5 per cent to E118m, while Casino de la
Vallée Saint Vincent was down 7.6 per cent to E94.5m. Sanremo
saw its revenues decline 5.7 per cent to E78.5m. The recession and
the rapid expansion of lower stakes gaming is to blame.
The new Parx Casino
opened in the suburbs
gaming operators
of Philadelphia in
December hitting its
revenues slightly
reap the market
If Atlantic City casinos across the state border in New Jersey are
experiencing what might yet be terminal decline, it is competition
from the casinos and racinos of Pennsylvania that are mostly to
blame. December, for most of them, was quite satisfactory.
growingattraction it prepared its move to a cent rise to $17.5m
PENNSYLVANIA new location in Bensalem. (E12.1m) while the biggest
However the month’s fall was at Mount Airy,
Gaming revenue across figures also include the con- where revenue dropped
Pennsylvania rose by more tribution of two casinos 19.2 per cent to $9.7m
than a quarter in December that opened in the last year: (E6.7m).
by comparison to the same the Bethlehem Sands and In statement, the PGCB
month in 2008, the Gaming the Rivers Casino, which said: “December’s Figures
Control Board has accounted for 95 per cent also showed that the seven previous year. and counties that surround This year is set to see
announced. of the increase. casinos currently in opera- Casinos in Pennsylvania the casino locations, and to great changes to the indus-
Together the nine venues The five-day hiatus cost tion that were also operat- are taxed heavily: among assist the Commonwealth’s try with the introduction of
brought in a total gross Parx Casino a fall of 1.1 per ing last December the highest rates in the US horse and harness racing table games into the market
gaming revenue of $155m cent in its December rev- produced a 1.4 per cent at 55 per cent of gross industries. for the first time. The move
(E107m), up more than 28 enues, which came in at increase this year.” gaming revenue. The money In 2009, Pennsylvania’s is likely to lead to more
per cent, despite the $26.4m (E18.2m). The The nine casinos is hypothecated to reduce tax revenues reached people staying in Pennsyl-
closure of the Common- biggest gain in the month together operated an local property taxes, the $1.08bn (E745.20m), vania rather than having to
wealth’s largest gaming was experienced by Holly- average of 24,754 slot funding of safety and com- breaching the $1bn barrier go to Atlantic City. Revenues
revenue generator, Parx wood National Casinos, machines in December, munity improvement proj- for the first time and almost will assuredly rise but so
Casino for four days while which reported a 25.7 per compared to 16,712 the ects in the municipalities 22 per cent up on 2008. will the operators’ costs.
Thunderbird close to
completing Panama
and India deals
thunderbirdsarego finance to move ahead with equity target has been
THUNDERBIRD RESORTS its project to open India’s reached.
second land-based casino, Thunderbird has also
Panama-based and by far the larger, in the received a sanction letter
international casino tiny territory of Daman two from Indian banks covering
operator Thunderbird hours’ drive north of the entire amount of the
Resorts has said in a Mumbai. senior debt required: loan
trading update it is close to In addition to the agreements are being
completing the sale of its US$16m (E11.2m) drawn up and the company
64 per cent stake in investment made by the hopes to have closed on
International Thunderbird company and its joint the financing by the end of
Gaming (Panama) to Merit venture partners, the January.
Gaming. project also needed $13.5m “If we do close on the
Thunderbird has (E9.4m) in mezzanine equity senior financing in January
accepted Merit’s exclusive as well as $25m (E17.4m) in 2010, we anticipate
Letter of Intent proposal for senior secured debt. With completing the project
the company, which owns the aid of a $7.5m (E5.2m) construction and opening
six casinos in Panama, with investment by private for business in
the aim of entering equity firm Madison India approximately mid-2010,”
definitive agreements Real Estate Fund in said the company in a
during the first quarter of November, the mezzanine statement.
2010. This will give Merit
the time it needs to
undertake due diligence
and also gain the approval
of the Panama Gaming
Control Board.
Merit has substantial
experience in the
development and operation
of casinos across the
United States as well as in
Central and South America.
Thunderbird also
announced that it has
found the necessary
February 2010 • businessnews 95
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