Century Casinos has lauded a “great start” to the current year that has been driven by record first quarter revenue and adjusted EBITDA, which continues a similar streak of performances demonstrated throughout the past 12 months.
Furthermore, the casino and entertainment operator is also investing in long-term growth opportunities, spearheaded by projects in Missouri and Nevada, as well as examining the prospect of dipping its toes into the M&A well once more.
This comes after February 2022’s agreement to purchase 50 per cent of Smooth Bourbon, as well as Nevada’s Nugget Casino Resort, from Marnell Gaming for $195m.
Peter Hoetzinger, Co-Chief Executive Officer of Century Casinos, noted on how the current environment has impacted that M&A space: “First of all, the M&A environment, it’s more active than it was last year. There are at least a handful of properties on the market.
“We are looking at two of those. And yes, I mean it all varies depending on the market and the circumstance.
“But I don’t want to say prices are coming down at all, but the opportunities are really exciting. And some of the opportunities that are being marketed would fit very well into our portfolio. So you will see us be very active in the next couple of quarters.”
The comments come as the group discloses its performance through the year’s first quarter, which saw revenue increase 42 per cent to $103.1m (2021: $72.41m), with the US again taking the lion’s share to close at $65.28m, up just one percentage point from 2021’s $64.37m.
However, Canadian operations soared to $15.99m from $2m one year earlier, with its Polish estate up 269 per cent to $21.82m (2021: $5.91m).
Furthermore, the quarter also saw Century swing from a net loss of $1.9m one year earlier to earnings of $2.9m, as adjusted EBITDA rose 62 per to $23.82m (2021: $4.74m).
“Our revenue growth was broad based, as each of our three operating segments posted new first quarter revenue records,” noted Hoetzinger.
“The continued focus on our core customer and a streamlined cost structure contributed to this great results and margins and allowed us to continue our strong operating momentum from last year
“Compared to pre-COVID times, meaning the first quarter of 2019 we are well ahead, we actually increased the margin by 800 basis points.
“Marketing spend continues to remain significantly below pre-COVID levels, and is expected to continue at its current run rate moving forward.
“Reductions in advertising, direct mail and promotional expenses appear to be sustainable, and have not had any negative impact on gaming volumes.”