KUALA LUMPUR May 29 Malaysian-based
conglomerate Genting Bhd, which controls one of the
world's most profitable casinos in Singapore, reported a 25
percent rise in first-quarter net profit due to higher volumes
in its gaming business.
Net profit climbed to 497.5 million Malaysian ringgit
($154.4 million) in the first quarter to March from 397.8
million ringgit in the same quarter a year earlier. Revenue rose
20 percent year-on-year.
Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and
amortisation (EBITDA) rose as a result of lower costs for its
premium players business, which was slightly offset by higher
The gaming-to-plantations group, controlled by the Lim
family, one of the most powerful families in Malaysian business,
has been spending heavily to expand aggressively in the United
States and South Korea.
Genting will begin construction of a $4 billion gaming resort
on the Las Vegas strip in the second half of this year, it said
on May 8.
It is also interested in eventual opportunities in Japan,
which is preparing to allow casinos to open up and has the
potential to become the world's second-biggest gaming market,
worth $15 billion a year.
Genting also has interests in property development and
plantations and operates Asia's largest listed cruise operator.
Genting Hong Kong.
The results were announced after the Kuala Lumpur stock
Genting shares have fallen 4.5 percent year to date,
compared with an 0.5 percent rise in the Kuala Lumpur benchmark
index over the same period.
($1 = 3.2225 Malaysian Ringgits)
(Reporting By Yantoultra Ngui and Al-Zaquan Amer Hamzah;
editing by Jane Baird)