Southeast Asian casino operator Donaco International Limited said its Cambodian casino, Star Vegas in Poipet, returned to profitability in July – the first full month of operations since reopening in June.
The company released its financial results for the year ended 30 June 2022 on Tuesday, announcing an EBITDA loss of AU$4.41 million on a 76.4% year-on-year decline in revenue to AU$2.44 million. This followed the lengthy closure of Star Vegas between 27 April 2021 and 18 June 2022 and limited business operations at Donaco’s other casino, Aristo International, in northern Vietnam.
However, Donaco said Tuesday that the reopening of Star Vegas and the recommencement of quarantine-free entry for vaccinated international visitors, including those from neighboring Thailand, has already provided a boost with the Cambodian border casino recording turnover of AU$1.26 million in July. Group EBITDA also hit AU$900,000 for the month on the back of Star Vegas’s recovery.
Aristo, meanwhile, remains constrained due to its reliance on visitors from neighboring China.
“China, a key market for Aristo, is yet to open its borders and international tourism, and consequently, this has led Aristo to shift to a more domestic tourist market,” Donaco said. For the year ended 30 June 2022, Aristo generated revenue of AU$1.5 million – up 23.9% year-on-year – with EBITDA of AU$200,000.
Donaco’s Non-Executive Chairman, Paul Porntat, said, “FY22 was a tough year for Donaco as we tried to minimise the impact of COVID-19 on our two operations, Star Vegas and Aristo. I’m proud of the team who navigated through these difficult times, as necessary actions were taken to preserve the business while keeping tight control on costs.
“Pleasingly, with the reopening of Star Vegas, and a return to full-scale operations on the horizon, it seems the worse is behind us. Aristo has attracted some domestic tourists, and the recent award as the only 5 Star Hotel in the Lao Cai province is also a way to attract new visitors.
“Macro-economic factors are improving – vaccination rates are at high levels, leading to the easing of borders and travel restrictions in the regions we operate. Of course, it will take some time before travel patterns return to normal, and we are prepared for when tourism will steadily resume again.”