SJM Holding Q1 EBITDA rose 2.9 percent, lagging peers

    SJM Holdings said property EBITDA rose 2.9 percent in the first quarter to HK$2.19 billion ($282.5 million), in line with analysts’ expectations, but lagging the results of its peers. Gaming revenue rose 4.9 percent to HK$22.78 billion. Melco Crown reported a 31.2 percent EBITDA gain in the period, Las Vegas Sands was up 49.1 percent, MGM China gained 34.2 percent and Wynn Resorts was up 16.2 percent. SJM’s results were hurt by a fall in VIP business, which was down 3 percent and slower mass market growth, despite the opening of a new mass premium area at the Grand Lisboa – the Tycoon Club – with 12 tables during the quarter. However, UBS said in a note that the trends appear to have improved in April, with the table win per day at the club hitting $30,000 compared to just $4,000 when it opened. The company is also continuing with more mass floor expansion at its Grand Lisboa property, aiming for a further 12-14 tables by the fourth quarter. Sterne Agee points out that the company is constrained by its lack of presence in Cotai. The company has broken ground on its new Lisboa Palace on Cotai, which is expected to be completed in 2017. Sterne Agee said it expects a “strong patron reaction” to the property once opened.