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Caesars turns in best quarterly performance since 2008

7 May 2015

By Richard N. Velotta
Bankrupt Caesars Entertainment had its best quarterly performance since 2008 because of improving results at its Las Vegas properties and higher volume in its online poker offering.

Caesars Chairman and CEO Gary Loveman, in his last conference call with investors before he steps down as CEO in July, said Wednesday he’s optimistic about Las Vegas’ fortunes for the rest of 2015 unlike Strip colleague Steve Wynn, who forecast stagnant returns for Southern Nevada in the months ahead when he addressed Wynn Resorts shareholders April 28.

“I’m feeling pretty good for the second quarter and beyond for Las Vegas,” Loveman told investors. “I do not share Mr. Wynn’s pessimism.”

Because Caesars Entertainment Operating Co. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in January and effectively deconsolidated into separate operating units, the company filed supplementary material to show some comparisons between the quarter that ended March 31 and same quarter a year earlier.

In the supplementary information, the company reported net income of $7.7 million on revenue of $2.2 billion from its four operating units had they not deconsolidated compared with a first-quarter loss of $306 million on revenue of $2 billion for the same period a year earlier.

The four operating units combined results from the Jan. 15 bankruptcy filing to the end of the quarter with the first 15 days of January as Caesars Entertainment.

Those deconsolidated units include Caesars Entertainment Resort Properties, which owns six casinos, the Linq promenade and the Octavius Tower at Caesars Palace; Caesars Growth Partners, which owns six casinos and the online poker subsidiary Caesars Interactive Entertainment; Caesars Entertainment Operating Co., which owns 19 U.S. casinos and nine internationally; and Caesars Enterprise Services, a joint venture among Caesars Entertainment and other subsidiaries that own licenses and other assets.

The company’s gains in revenue were attributed to increased volume through Caesars Interactive, the subsidiary that runs the company’s World Series of Poker Internet poker website and openings of new properties, The Cromwell and the Linq promenade in Las Vegas and The Horseshoe Casino Baltimore.

Loveman also said the company’s Atlantic City property is positioning itself for revenue increases with the opening of a new convention facility that already is ahead of booking projections.

On the negative side, Loveman said second-quarter declines could occur as a result of the curfew closure of the company’s Baltimore property as a result of April rioting and social unrest and a downturn in its New Orleans property as a result of a recently implemented smoking ban in the city.
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