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Twin River reports $32.4m first half net loss


Twin River Worldwide Holdings saw revenue for the first half of 2020 fall 47.7% year-on-year,  becoming the latest listed US operator to outline the disruption caused by novel coronavirus (Covid-19) on its business. 

Revenue for the six months to June 30 amounted to $138.1m, down from $263.8m in the prior year. The majority of this came from gaming, which contributed $99.6m of the total, down 47.9%, while racing operations revenue fell 53.4%. 

Revenue from Twin River’s hotels declined to $9.8m, and food and beverage revenue was almost halved to $9.8m. The operator reported $8.6m in other revenue, down 46.4%. 

The operator’s properties were closed from mid-March, with only two reopening in May, though all properties had resumed operations in some form by 17 June. This shut-down did result in outgoings declining year-on-year, but as with other operators that have reported figures for the six month period, the fall in costs was far outstripped by the drop in revenue. 

For Twin River, total operating costs and expenses declined 18.8% to $162.2m, resulting in an operating loss of $24.1m for H1. The operator recorded $26.5m in interest expenses, which after a $18.2m income tax benefit, resulted in a net loss of $32.4m, compared to a profit of $34.8m in H1 2019. 

This followed a second quarter in which Twin River saw revenue decline sharply, despite property reopenings suggesting the operator was beginning to recover in June. Revenue for the three months to 30 June dropped 79.8% year-on-year to $28.9m, with $22.4m of that sum generated in June alone. 

For the two months to May 31, revenue fell 93.2% to $6.6m, with Twin River’s Mississippi properties, Hard Rock Biloxi and Casino Vicksburg (formerly Lady Luck Casino) opening from May 21. 

June, on the other hand, saw Delaware’s Dover Downs and Casino KC (formerly Isle of Capri Casino) reopening from the first, followed by the Twin River Lincoln and Tiverton properties in Rhode Island, albeit by invitation only from June 8. The operator’s casinos in Black Hawk, Colorado – the Mardi Gras, Golden Gates and Golden Gulch venues – followed on 17 June. 

Twin River said performance had been best at the properties that had been able to operate close to normal capacity and with more amenities, namely Hard Rock Biloxi and Dover Downs. The Mississippi venue actually saw revenue rise 2% from June 2019.

While the Rhode Island reopenings were more of a “pre-opening period”, the operator said performance in July had rebounded strongly. Revenue for the properties is likely to be up around 240% month-on-month, or 60% of revenue generated for the prior year.

Expenses in the second quarter declined significantly, falling 54.4% to $49.9m, of which advertising, general and administrative costs were the biggest outgoing at $24.0m. However, this was again outstripped by the revenue decline, resulting in a quarterly operating loss of $21.0m.

Twin River reported a loss before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of $10.7m for the quarter, compared to $47.5m in positive EBITDA for the prior year.

After $15.1m in interest expenses, plus a $12.5m income tax benefit, net loss for the quarter came to $23.6m. In Q2 2019, Twin River posted a 17.2m profit. 

Despite the disruption caused by the pandemic, Twin River chief executive George Papanier said the business was “thrilled” to be able to welcome back its employees and customers, to “safe and secure environments that meet or exceed CDC safety guidelines”. 

“Since reopening, where we have been permitted to operate under fewer capacity restrictions with more amenities, we are seeing strong demand,” he explained. 

He said the newly-acquired and rebranded Mississippi and Missouri properties had experienced strong demand and generated positive cash flow since the acquisition closed in July.

“The Casino KC and Casino Vicksburg properties are a great fit for our portfolio and significantly expand our geographic footprint with assets in attractive markets,” Papanier explained. “We see a lot to build on and look forward to working with the local teams to realize the strategic benefits of this transaction.”

The operator is in the process of acquiring three more properties divested by the business formed through the merger of Caesars Entertainment and Eldorado Resorts. It is to acquire the Louisiana-based Eldorado Shreveport Resort and Casino, and its Nevada property Mont Bleu Casino Resort & Spa in Lake Tahoe for $155m, as well as Caesars’ Bally’s Atlantic City property for $25m.