Caesars Entertainment To Restart Operations After Downturn In Q1

Caesars Entertainment plans to restart operations at some properties across its network if approved by local government or tribal bodies, as the casino operator has reported a 13.6 percent decrease in revenues from Q1.

Having released its latest financial report following the closure of all North American assets in mid-March, sales closed at $1.83 billion (2019: $2.11 billion) while operating losses came in at $66 million (2019: + $240 million).

Adjusted EBITDA finished at $299 m (2019: $562 m) due to losses in the month of March from property closures and labour costs in line with the prior year.

Caesars argues that the declines follow a strong demonstration in the first two months of the year, when net income rose 12% year-on-year, driven by increases across all vertical regions, highlighted by strength in Las Vegas and Indiana.

Subsequent closures culminated in the results of its segments ‘Las Vegas’ and others with decreases in poker, hotel, food and beverage and other revenues. ‘All Other’ fell 12 percent year-over-year to $132 m (2019: $150 m), primarily due to lower gaming rates in the UK due to property closures.

When reopening becomes a possibility, Caesars must encourage network-wide social distancing activities in line with guidelines from domestic and foreign agencies, including federal and relevant state and local public health agencies, and introduce other strengthened policies on health and safety.

Caesars expects to reopen properties in Las Vegas, Atlantic City, Council Bluffs and Lake Tahoe, in phases in accordance with planned business demand.

Caesars Entertainment CEO Tony Rodio has clarified: “The public health emergency caused by COVID-19 has created extraordinary challenges and is impacting all aspects of society, including our business. While we posted our best operating performance since 2008 in the first two months of the quarter, circumstances changed dramatically in March as we temporarily shut-down all of our casino properties, consistent with directives from various governmental and tribal bodies.

“Our first quarter performance reflects the significant revenue declines we experienced as a result of the closures and stable year over year labour costs in March as we continued to provide pay and benefits to our team members for the first two weeks of the closure period.

“We are taking steps to prepare for reopening, when appropriate, with the health and safety of our employees and guests in mind. We are also aggressively managing all of our operating levers to strengthen our financial position and enhance our ability to reopen and recover, including making the difficult but necessary decision to furlough the majority of our team members.

“We look forward to welcoming back employees and guests at the appropriate time, and we believe our deep connection with our guests and the geographic diversity of our network positions us well when that time arrives.”