In the background of a series of declines across key financial indicators for the six months ending December 31, 2020, SkyCity Entertainment has cited ongoing COVID-19 instability, as well as the effects of the New Zealand International Convention Centre fire, as significant contributing factors.
The lack of international tourism related to its wider business operations is said to have “significantly impacted” the company during the reporting period, while praising the resilience of its local gaming performance.
Revenue dropped 30.7 percent to NZ$ 499.9 million for the H1 2021 period (2020: NZ721.7 million), net profit after tax collapsed 76 percent to NZ$ 78.4 million (2020: $ 328 million), and EBITDA declined 62.5 percent from NZ$ 4075 million to NZ$ 152.6 million.
Michael Ahearne, CEO and SkyCity said: “Our local gaming performance has demonstrated resilience in the first half whilst our tourism-related businesses including hotels, food and beverage and international business, have been significantly impacted.
Adding: “We have been making operational adjustments to the business when necessary in response to the ever-changing market environment resulting from COVID-19 and we continue to adhere to all government guidance to ensure our staff and customers are managed safely.”
Auckland is celebrated at the property level as providing resilient local gaming activity, offset by a pandemic of disrupted non-gaming performance; Hamilton and Queenstown bring double-digit EBITDA rise, driven by local gaming and cost control initiatives, respectively.
Before the opening of its AU$330m expansion, the group’s Adelaide performance was affected by COVID-19 disruption, with performance after the opening of the new facilities said to be dramatically improved across all operations.
SkyCity, however, reports that its online casino company, delivered in collaboration with the Gaming Innovation Group, has exceeded expectations with “significant growth in revenue and EBITDA despite operational constraints.”
SkyCity notes that it “presents a significant long-term growth opportunity with potential to monetise omnichannel gaming in the future, subject to regulation of the online casino market in New Zealand,” reporting approximately 30,000 active customers with a wide geographical reach across New Zealand.
With a future perspective, Ahearne continues: “Turning to the outlook for FY21, we will continue to focus on navigating through the uncertainty presented by COVID-19 (including alert level 3 settings in Auckland this week) whilst delivering our medium-term strategic plan including leveraging our new assets such as the Adelaide expansion and Auckland VIP gaming facilities.”
SkyCity has also announced the selection of Julie Amey as Chief Financial Officer, joining the company from Shell, Australia, in addition to its trading report.
Amey will start the position on May 1, 2021, and will replace Rob Hamilton, who resigned late last year and will leave the organisation on February 26, 2021.