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Kimberly De La Cruz

Revenues, profits down for Las Vegas Sands Corp.

24 April 2015

Las Vegas Sands Corp. revenues dropped below forecast nearly 25 percent in the first quarter of 2015.

The company announced Wednesday its revenue for the quarter, which ended March 31, fell 24.9 percent to $3.01 billion compared with $4.01 billion in the first quarter of 2014.

Net income was $511.9 million compared with $776 million in the first quarter of 2014.

Softer results across the company’s properties in Macau were the primary cause of the decline.

“The operating environment in Macau, particularly in the high-end gaming segments, remained challenging during the quarter,” said chairman and CEO Sheldon Adelson.

But he’s confident that plans for nongaming revenue in the area will remain steady. About half of the gaming company’s Macau employees, roughly 15,000, work outside of gaming.

The Cotai Strip properties saw more than 16 million visits, and the retail malls there generated $2.5 billion in sales, which translates to nearly 40 percent of all retail sales in Macau, the chairman said.

“I know you’re all waiting for me to predict if we’ve reached the bottom in Macau,” he said on the quarterly conference call. “It’s very difficult to make predictions, particularly about the future.”

He said that they will continue to operate the resorts in Macau and will pursue other development opportunities, citing the company’s track record of “staying the course.”

Adelson said despite the Macau numbers, the company delivered a “solid set” of financial results, and was able to return excess capital to shareholders.

Las Vegas Sands paid dividends of 66 cents per share, down from 97 cents per share in 2014. Revenue fell in Las Vegas, although net income was up 2.6 percent. Local properties owned by Las Vegas Sands include The Venetian, Palazzo and the Sands Expo and Convention Center.

“The company is financially stronger that it has ever been,” Adelson said.