Macau casino operator SJM Q3 net profit rises 41 pct

HONG KONG Thu Nov 15, 2012 4:59am EST

HONG KONG Nov 15 (Reuters) - Macau's biggest casino operator, SJM Holdings Ltd, controlled by the family of gambling tycoon Stanley Ho, posted a 41 percent increase in third-quarter net profit, buoyed by a larger number of mass market Chinese gamblers.

The former Portuguese colony of Macau is the only place in China where casino gambling is legal. A drop in spending from VIP high rollers has put rising pressure on SJM and its competitors, who are already seeing a sharp slowdown in growth in the world's casino capital.

SJM said on Thursday net profit in the third quarter was HK$1.7 billion ($219 million) compared with HK$1.17 billion a year earlier. EBITDA was HK$1.9 billion in the same period, in line with a forecast of HK$1.9 billion by five analysts polled by Reuters.

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