Troubled casino investor Imperial Pacific International Holdings says it expects its losses for the six months to 30 June 2020 to fall by more than 50% year-on-year, ironically as a result of less bad debt following the closure of all casino operations due to COVID-19 in March.
Issuing a profit warning on Tuesday, IPI revealed that consolidated loss by the company and its subsidiaries looks likely to decline by no less than 50% compared with the same period in 2019, when it reported a loss attributable to owners of the company of HK$1.88 billion (US$243 million).
IPI added that, “The expected decrease in unaudited consolidated loss is mainly attributable to the reduction in impairment losses recognized for trade receivables.”
The company last year reported gross trade receivables of HK$9.17 billion (US$1.18 billion) through 30 June 2019 of which it said HK$1.09 billion (US$140.6 million) was from one customer and HK$2.48 billion (US$320 million) from its 10 largest customers.
Nevertheless, the expected reduction in loss won’t provide much comfort to IPI which recently requested an abatement of its annual US$15.5 million casino license fee, supposedly due to pressures brought about by COVID-19. The Governor of the CNMI has threatened to suspend or revoke IPI’s casino license if it does not pay.
The US Federal Court also recently ordered IPI to pay US$5.6 million to its former contractor, Pacific Rim Land Development LLC, for services rendered.