Wynn Resorts 2Q profit rises on Las Vegas strength


LAS VEGAS (AP) — Wynn Resorts Ltd.'s second-quarter earnings increased 57 percent, bolstered by a jump in gambling revenue and more hotel and restaurant spending during the typically slow Las Vegas summer.

Officials with the Las Vegas-based casino company, which owns Wynn and Encore casinos in both Las Vegas and the Chinese gambling enclave of Macau, also said a huge casino-building project in Cotai is on pace and they are confident as they expand in the "steadfast" and "predictable" environment in Macau.

The company's adjusted profit topped analysts' estimates, but revenue missed Wall Street's view.

Wynn reported net income rose to $203.9 million, or $2 per share, from $129.8 million, or $1.28 per share, a year ago.

Earnings, adjusted for non-recurring costs and to extinguish debt, came to $2.11 per share. The average per-share estimate of analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for profit of $2.08.

Wynn Resorts said revenue climbed 6 percent to $1.41 billion from $1.33 billion, but missed Wall Street forecast of $1.44 billion.

Revenue in Macau — the only place in China where gambling is legal — rose 3 percent. CEO Steve Wynn told investors in a conference call that construction on a $4 billion Wynn Palace Hotel in Cotai is on budget and should be finished in time for Chinese New Year 2016.

On a conference call with investors, Wynn compared his company to the successful rival Las Vegas Sands, saying Wynn has a smaller share of the market in Macau and is taking longer to get a foothold but yields more revenue per room.

"We build houses of brick, and our houses of brick take a little longer to erect than some of the others," Wynn said, comparing his company's growth to the story of the Three Little Pigs. "But they are built for the long term, and we're seeing that now."

Las Vegas revenue increased 12.5 percent, helped by a strong gain in casino revenue and higher revenue from rooms, food and drinks. Company officials said they loaded their calendars with events to keep business humming even during the typical summer slowdown.

"We've been very busy. It's been a very active summer," Maurice Wooden, president of Wynn Las Vegas, said on the conference call. "We feel like we have a very active calendar going forward toward the end of the year. And so we're very optimistic."

Wynn Resorts said its total outstanding debt at the quarter's end was $7.3 billion. This included $3.1 billion of Wynn Las Vegas debt, $2.3 billion of Wynn Macau debt and $1.9 billion at the parent company.

The company's shares rose $7.82, or 3.7 percent, to $218.79 in afternoon trading Tuesday. Its shares have risen more than 8 percent so far this year through Monday's close.

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