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New casinos power Churchill Downs Q2 revenue growth


Churchill Downs reported a 25.8% increase in revenue to $477.4m for the second quarter of 2019 as new and newly-acquired casinos  helped the company to a 64.3% rise in off-site gaming revenue. 

Revenue from the Churchill Downs racetrack for the three months to 30 June amounted to $161m, up from $154.9m last year, after a record $250.9m handle for Kentucky Derby Day including $165.5m wagered on the race itself.

The Derby City Gaming facility, opened in September 2018 on the Churchill Downs site, took in $21.2m, bringing total revenue from the Churchill Downs site to $182.2m.

The operator’s casino estate increased by three following the acquisitions of Ocean Downs in Berlin, Maryland; Presque Isle in Erie, Pennsylvania and Lady Luck Nemacolin in Farmington, Pennsylvania. The new casinos took in $21.9m, $37.1m and $8.3m respectively, with Presque Isle being the highest-grossing of all Churchill Downs casino properties.

Churchill Downs’ other five casinos made moderate gains in revenue, from $107.8m to $110.3m, led by Fair Grounds and VSI in New Orleans, Louisiana with $30.9m.

Online wagering increased marginally from $93.7m to $95.6m, while other revenue totalled $22m, down from $22.7m last year.

With the operation of the four new facilities, operating expenditure also rose, from $242.8m to $321m. Expenses at the Churchill Downs site including Derby City Gaming amounted to $73.6m, up from $58m last year, while other gaming expenses totalled $133.2m, a 70.6% increase from last year.

The company’s total operating income amounted to $156.4m, while its net income was $107.1m, up 4% year-on-year.

For the first half of 2019, Churchill Downs took in a total net revenue of $742.8m, up from $568.7m last year. Revenue from the Churchill Downs site increased from $156.9m to $203.2m, while other gaming revenue increased from $219.6m to $346.4m.

Expenses increased from $412.4m to $558.4m, meaning income from continuing operations increased from $117.3m to $120.2m. However, with the sale of the since-divested social casino business Big Fish Games included in 2018’s H1 figures, net income declined from $285.1m to $118.7m.