Survey: Top gaming companies have distinctive Asian ties

19 February 2013
LAS VEGAS -- A recent ranking of the top 20 gaming companies based on market capitalization had one distinctive flavor.

The top 10 companies have either a direct investment or control of Asian gaming assets.

Global Betting & Gaming Consultants - GBGC, which is based in the United Kingdom, ranked the worldwide companies according to U.S. dollars. The firm included traditional casino operators, online gaming companies with businesses based in legal Internet wagering markets, gaming equipment manufacturers and bookmakers in the rankings.

Las Vegas Sands Corp., which operates casinos on the Strip, Macau, Singapore and Pennsylvania, had the leading market capitalization with a value of $44.2 billion. The company's subsidiary, Sands China, which controls the company's casino projects in Macau and is traded on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, was second in the ranking with a market capitalization of $37.8 billion.

Market capitalization is a figure used by investors that is equal to a public company's price per share multiplied by the total number of shares outstanding.

GBGC calculated the ranking based on stock market closing prices from Wednesday.

Macau is the world's largest gaming market, producing $38 billion in gaming revenues in 2012. Genting, which operates Resorts World Sentosa in Singapore, has yet to announce fourth-quarter earnings. Union Gaming Group estimated the two casinos in Singapore owned by Genting and Las Vegas Sands could produce roughly $5.7 billion in gaming for 2012, leaving the market third behind the Strip's $6.2 billion in gaming revenues for 2012.

Galaxy Entertainment of Hong Kong, which operates several Macau resorts, was third in the market capitalization rankings at almost $18.2 billion.

Genting, which is headquartered in Malaysia, was fourth in the ranking at $16 billion. Genting doesn't operate a casino in Macau but operates the slot machine-only Resorts World New York at the Aqueduct Racetrack.

Wynn Macau, a subsidiary of Wynn Resorts Ltd., and is traded on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, was sixth in the ranking with a market capitalization of almost $13.6 billion. Wynn Resorts was seventh with a market capitalization of $12.3 billion.

Similarly, MGM Resorts International's Macau subsidiary, MGM China Holdings, was 10th in the rankings with $8.6 billion in market capitalization. MGM Resorts had a market capitalization of $6.5 billion, 12th on the list.

Warwick Bartlett, the CEO of GBGC, said the rankings demonstrated the economic power of the Asian gaming market.

Only two European gaming companies made the top 20. Bookmaker William Hill, which acquired three Nevada-based race and sports book operations last year, was 15th at $4.4 billion while Irish-based online wagering giant Paddy Power was 18th at $4 billion.

Slot machine giant International Game Technology was 16th on the list with a market capitalization of $4.35 billion.

The only other American-based company in the top 20 was regional casino giant Penn National Gaming, which was 19th at $3.98 billion. Penn National owns the M Resort.

Bartlett said the implied willingness of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to support Internet gaming in his state helped boost the market capitalizations of online wagering providers.

Christie vetoed an online gaming bill approved by state lawmakers last week, but said he could support a new bill that included several of his suggested changes.

On a separate list, London-based online gaming software provider Playtech was the top online gaming company with a market capitalization of $2.4 billion.

Gibraltar-based Bwin Party, which operates online gaming sites in Europe and has agreements with MGM Resorts and Boyd Gaming Corp. to operate online poker in Nevada, was second with a market capitalization of at $1.79 billion.

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