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Las Vegas Sands (NYSE: LVS ) seems to have hit the jackpot this time. The casino biggie recently reported its first-quarter results and delivered a set of spectacular numbers, posting impressive growth in its top and bottom lines across all regions.
In fact, Las Vegas Sands seems to have set a new record as it reported one of the highest ever quarterly adjusted property earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortization in the casino industry -- a whopping $1.07 billion!
Let's take a closer look at the quarter.
Revenue increased to $2.76 billion, a 31% boost over the prior-year period. Net income was $499 million, a robust increase of around 72% last year. Excluding special items, earnings of $0.70 a share handily beat analyst estimates of $0.60.
It's hard to put my finger on one single factor that helped growth, simply because there were meaningful contributions from Sands' operations all over -- in Las Vegas, Singapore, and Macau. Casinos generated 82% of the company's revenue, while sales from hotels, restaurants, theaters, and other retail facilities in its resorts provided accounted for the rest. Casino revenue in itself increased by 36%, with the help of a better win percentage and a higher number of gamblers.
The company has three major casino resorts in Macau (excluding the one that just opened) -- Venetian Macau, Sands Macau, and the Four Seasons Macau. Together, these properties generated more than half of the company's overall sales and grew at a 25% rate over last year.
The company's performance in Singapore, where it owns just one casino-resort -- the Marina Bay Sands -- was even more impressive, as the company generated 45% more in sales than last year, helped by a healthy increase in casino revenue and a 98% occupancy rate at the resort.
And that's not all. The home market displayed an encouraging trend, as the company's properties in Las Vegas put up a good show as well. Although this region contributes only 14% to Sands' total sales, a 91% increase in casino revenue certainly deserves to be mentioned. The fact that this trend overrides the slow economic recovery in the U.S. should spell good times ahead for the company.
The Foolish outlook
Sands opened up its much-awaited $5 billion property, the Sands Cotai Central in Macau, early in April, and it's expected to fetch a bundle. Macau obviously features high on CEO Sheldon Adelson's priority list, as he outlined plans to build another 3,600-room hotel in the region. Having an insatiable appetite for growth, Adelson has set his eyes on Europe as well, as he targets Spain for his massive Eurovegas venture. The company seems to be growing faster than any of its peers, including MGM Resorts (NYSE: MGM ) and Wynn Resorts (Nasdaq: WYNN ) , with a much-needed competitive edge.
Las Vegas Sands sure seems like the stock to look out for. With the money flowing in from Asia, followed by an uptrend in the U.S. and massive expansion plans for Europe, this company looks firmly set on the growth path. I love Las Vegas Sands, and if you feel the same, make sure you add this company to your Watchlist to stay updated on all its Foolish analysis. It's free!
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