Mar. 6, 2012 (China Knowledge) - Sands China Ltd<1928>, the Macau unit of casino operator Las Vegas Sands Corp, reaped US$1.13 billion in net profit last year, reflecting a year-on-year jump of 70% from US$666.5 million, as Chinese tourists drove higher sales at Macau casinos.
The profit exceeded an average forecast of US$1.08 billion made by 13 analysts at Bloomberg.
Earnings per share increased to 14.07 US cents from 8.28 US cents in 2010. Sales for last year rose 18% to US$4.88 billion, of which US$4.2 billion was derived from casino business, up 16% from a year earlier. Hong Kong-listed
Sands China affirmed its plans to open the first phase of its new resort on Macau's Cotai Strip in April, said CEO Edward Tracy, adding that the new casino is designed to add 40 VIP gaming rooms or about 140 VIP gaming tables, as well as 200 mass market gaming tables.
The second phase of Sands Cotai Central is expected to open in October with 200 mass market gaming tables. The new casino will join Sands China's existing venues of the Venetian, Four Seasons, Sands and Plaza Casino, said the company.
Macau, the only place in China where gambling is legal, saw casino business generate US$33.5 billion in revenue last year, up 42% year on year, according to the city's Gaming Inspection & Coordination Bureau.