MGM Q3 Strip Revenue Soars, Still Pursuing New York, Osaka Licenses

Bolstered by an impressive showing on the Las Vegas Strip, MGM Resorts International (NYSE:MGM) reported a 26% year-over-year jump in third-quarter revenue, handily beating Wall Street estimates.

MGM Las Vegas
MGM Las Vegas
Bellagio on the Las Vegas Strip. Operator MGM reported solid Q3 results. (Image: YouTube)

The July through September period of 2022 now ranks as the Bellagio operator’s best quarter ever on the basis of revenue and adjusted property earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortization, and restructuring or rent costs (EBITDAR).

On the Las Vegas Strip where MGM is the largest operator, the company posted a 67% year-over-year revenue increase to $2.3 billion as adjusted property EBITDAR surged to $846 million from $535 million. Average hotel occupancy there was 93% during the third quarter with revenue per available (RevPAR) soaring to $210 from $142 last year.

While MGM’s domestic results were impressive, the shares slipped more than 2% in after-hours trading. That could be the result of ongoing disappoint in Macau. MGM China posted an adjusted EBITDAR loss of $70 million on revenue of just $87 million in the September quarter.

MGM Expansion Plans

MGM’s third-quarter results were enhanced by the additions of Aria, Cosmopolitan and Vdara to the portfolio. In 2021, company bought the 50% of CityCenter it didn’t own while selling the property assets of those two gaming venues. It completed its acquisition of Cosmopolitan’s operating rights earlier this year.

MGM remains in expansion mode, recently completing the purchase of Sweden’s LeoVegas with an eye toward land-based casino additions in new markets. In a statement, CEO Bill Hornbuckle said the firm is moving forward with plans to procure a downstate casino license for its Empire City venue in Yonkers, adding development of an integrated resort in Osaka, Japan remains on the agenda.

We achieved several key milestones during the quarter, including closing on the acquisition of LeoVegas and submitting our tender for a new gaming concession to the Macau SAR government,” said Hornbuckle in a statement. “Our outlook remains promising, with continued progress in our operations with BetMGM and development initiatives in New York and Japan as well as strong bookings into 2023 in our domestic operations.”

Keeping with the theme of narrowing losses in the digital gaming space, BetMGM lost $23.58 million in the September quarter, down from $49 million a year earlier.

MGM Buyback Binge Continues

One of the most voracious buyers of its own shares in the gaming industry, MGM continued that trend in the third quarter. The company repurchased approximately 10 million shares of its common for about $307 million. As of Sept. 30, there’s $827 million remaining on a previously buyback plan.

“We remain disciplined in our approach to capital deployment and are focused on maintaining a strong balance sheet with adequate liquidity, while also pursuing growth opportunities with the greatest return to shareholders,” said CFO Jonathan Halkyard in the statement.

Share repurchases remain MGM’s preferred method of shareholder rewards as the company’s annual dividend remains a paltry penny per share.

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