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Golden Entertainment returns to profit in 2021 as revenue surpasses $1.00bn

| By Robert Fletcher
Land-based operator Golden Entertainment returned to a net profit in its 2021 financial year after growth across the business meant revenue surpassed $1.00bn (£734.4m/€879.5m) for the first time.

Revenue for the 12 months through to 31 December 2021 reached $1.10bn, an increase of 58.0% from $694.2m in the previous year.

Gaming revenue increased 60.7% to $766.3m, while food and beverage revenue also hiked 49.7% to $167.8m, rooms revenue 53.8% to $109.8m and other revenue 55.2% to $52.6m.

Breaking down this performance, revenue from the operator’s casino resort properties in Nevada, which include The Strat Hotel, Casino & SkyPod, Aquarius Casino Resort and Edgewater Hotel & Casino Resort, jumped 55.5% to $389.7m.

Also in Nevada, revenue from Golden Entertainment’s local casinos, comprising Arizona Charlie’s Boulder, Arizona Charlie’s Decatur, Gold Town Casino, Lakeside Casino & RV Park and Pahrump Nugget Hotel Casino, was up 41.5% to $159.9m.

In Maryland, revenue at the Rocky Gap Casino Resort increased by 51.6% to $78.2m, while Golden Entertainment said revenue from its distributed gaming operations in Nevada and Montana, including its branded taverns in Nevada, jumped 68.0% to $467.6m.

Turning to costs and total operating expenses for the year were 22.1% higher at $930.5m. Non-operating expenses totalled $3.8m as $62.9m in interest costs were largely offset by $60.0m in other income.

This left a pre-tax profit of $162.2m, compared to a $136.6m loss in 2020, while adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) jumped 164.5% to a record $291.7m.

Golden Entertainment paid $436,000 in income tax meaning it ended the year with a net profit of $161.8m, in contrast to a net loss of $136.6m at the end of 2020.

Looking at the fourth quarter, revenue for the three months to 31 December increased 37.2% year-on-year to $282.0m. Gaming revenue was 29.8% higher at $191.2m, while food and beverage revenue jumped 41.3% to $44.8m, rooms revenue 71.1% to $29.6m and other revenue 76.3% to $16.4m.

Operating costs were 19.7% higher at $247.5m while non-operating costs were down 12.6% to $15.3m, comprised almost entirely of interest expenses.

Pre-tax profit reached $19.2m, compared to a net loss of $18.6m in 2020, while adjusted EBITDA also increased 72.1% to $67.8m.

After paying $70,000 in income tax, Golden Entertainment ended the fourth quarter with a net profit of $19.1m, in contrast to a net loss of $18.5m in 2020. 

“Our strong fourth quarter results concluded a record year for Golden, as we successfully navigated challenges to our operations throughout 2021,” Golden Entertainment chairman and chief executive Blake Sartini said. 

“The improved performance across our diverse operations drove our total annual revenue to over $1.00bn for the first time in history with full year adjusted EBITDA growing to $291.7m, almost 60% higher than full year 2019. 

“For 2022, we are focused on maximising our operating performance and cash flow which will position the company to refinance its existing indebtedness and accelerate returning capital to shareholders.”

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