19 Jan 2016

SkyCity group signals big profit rise

11:32 am on 19 January 2016

SkyCity Entertainment Group expects its first half net profit to be as much as 30 percent ahead of last year, driven by strong growth in its New Zealand businesses and cost savings.

Sky Tower. Auckland CBD

SkyCity's New Zealand businesses had performed well, the company said. Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

The Auckland casino operator said net profit for the six months to the end of December 2105 would be in a range of $69 million to $71 million, compared with $54.6m the year earlier.

All its New Zealand businesses had performed strongly, while turnover in its international high rollers business topped $7 billion in the first half period, the company said in a statement.

SkyCity said the improved result also reflected some significant cost savings at the underperforming Adelaide Casino, as well as lower debt funding costs.

The normalised profit, which better reflected the company's underlying performance, was expected to rise by as much as 29 percent over the year earlier, in a range of $83m to $86m.

The normalised profit includes adjustments for the high rollers' win rate, and write-offs associated with non-current assets, including the demolition of 16 buildings, to make room for the construction of its $700m international convention centre and hotel complex, located across the street from Sky's Auckland Casino.