August 22, 2017 / 11:23 PM / 10 months ago

Australia's Star Entertainment posts record full-year profit

Aug 23 (Reuters) - Australia’s Star Entertainment Group Ltd posted a record full-year profit on Wednesday, beating expectations as a higher-than-normal win rate made up for a fall in turnover from North Asian high-rollers.

The casino operator said its reported net profit for the year to June 30 rose 36 percent to A$264.4 million ($209 million) from A$194.4 million a year ago. That was ahead of an average of six analyst forecasts for net profit of A$233.1 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

The company declared a final dividend of 8.5 Australian cents per share, up from 7.5 cents per share a year ago.

Star is overhauling its business model by reducing its reliance on Chinese gamblers, previously the backbone of its business, after turnover from overseas visitors plunged in the wake of arrests in October of 19 employees at bigger rival Crown Resorts Ltd.

$1 = 1.2644 Australian dollars Reporting by Chris Thomas; Editing by Richard Pullin

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