When investors are expecting incredibly high growth rates from a stock, sometimes record results aren't enough. Las Vegas Sands
The explosive growth Las Vegas Sands has seen in Asia continued in the fourth quarter, and the Marina Bay Sands Resort helped push revenue 56.9% higher. Adjusted earnings per share of $0.42 even beat estimates, continuing a rapid transition to profitability as new resorts have opened.
The market apparently was a little disappointed with the results because of a slight revenue miss on slower-than-expected growth in Macau. A look at the Venetian Macau shows gaming revenue only grew 16.5%, while overall Macau's gaming revenue grew 52.4% in the fourth quarter. When MGM Resorts
At Marina Bay Sands in Singapore, growth is continuing at a steady pace as the resort opens the rest of its attractions. Gaming revenue was up 10.3% from last quarter but rooms, food and beverage, and retail all posted 20%-plus growth. These latter units aren't as meaningful at Marina Bay Sands, but they are an important indicator of the level of interest at the property, and interest is high indeed.
Incredibly strong EBITDA margins also continued in Singapore, rising to 54.6% in the fourth quarter. With $305.8 million in property EBITDA in the quarter, even if the resort doesn't see any growth it will easily be the most profitable casino resort in the world in 2011.
So why the long face from investors after what appears to be incredible results? It's simply a valuation problem that Las Vegas Sands' stock is running into. Like most growth stocks, if you fall short of expectations in any way investors will punish your stock. But there is still plenty of growth left and the opening of Sites 5 & 6 in Macau should lead to another record year in 2011.
I'll hold my final judgment until we see how MGM, Melco, and Wynn fared in Macau but Las Vegas Sands seems to be performing just fine, even if investors weren't satisfied.
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Fool contributor Travis Hoium's favorite poker hand is pocket jacks and does not have a position in any company mentioned. You can follow Travis on Twitter at @FlushDrawFool, check out his personal stock holdings or follow his CAPS picks at TMFFlushDraw.
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