World Gaming Insight

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Grand Korea Leisure sees 73.7% fall in casino sales in first month since re-opening

Korean foreigner-only casino operator Grand Korea Leisure saw its casino sales plummet 73.7% year-on-year to KRW10.36 billion (US$8.6 million) in May, impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic which continues to limit global travel.

GKL’s two casinos in Seoul and one in Busan under its Seven Luck brand were all closed throughout April and didn’t open their doors again until 6 May, although visitation looks set to remain stunted for some time to come.

May’s figures included a 76.1% decline in table game sales to KRW8.08 billion (US$6.7 million) and 58.8% fall in EGM sales to KRW2.34 billion (US$1.9 million). Table drop was down 74.1% to KRW101.22 billion (US$84.1 million).

Through the first five months of 2020, GKL’s casino sales have fallen 35.5% year-on-year to KRW120.59 billion (US$100.2 million) while table drop is down 53.6% to KRW868.72 billion (US$721.6 million).

The company had previously reported a 2.1% year-on-year increase in sales to KRW111.51 billion (US$92.6 million) and 68.3% increase in net income to KRW14.72 billion (US$12.2 million) in the first three months of the year, aided by an aggressive promotion strategy in place in early 2019 that had resulted in GKL recording its lowest first quarter operating profit since 2012.

Fellow foreigner-only operator Paradise Co last week reported a 51.2% year-on-year decline in casino revenue in May to KRW29.80 billion (US$24.5 million), with analysts pointing to pent-up demand among expats for the better than expected results.

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