Twin River Worldwide Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:TRWH), the operator of Rhode Island’s two casinos, reports third-quarter financial results Thursday after the close of US markets. With the company already having warned about the competitive impact of Wynn Resorts’ (NASDAQ:WYNN) Encore Boston Harbor, there’s a chance TRWH’s numbers could disappoint.
At least one analyst is preparing for a letdown. In a note obtained by Casino.org, Stifel analyst Brad Boyer lowered current and “out year” Rhode Island earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) and revenue forecasts on Twin River to more accurately reflect the effects of Encore Boston Harbor.
Boyer said Ocean State-issued data indicate third-quarter gross gaming revenue (GGR) declined nine percent at the Twin River and Tiverton casinos. The July through September period was the first full quarter of operation for Encore Boston Harbor.
Furthermore, based on WYNN’s reported results and comments from others operating in the market, we sense WYNN’s promotional spend, particularly with respect to its slot business, has remained elevated, an outcome that will likely have negative ramifications for TRWH’s margin performance over the next several quarters,” said the analyst.
Boyer now expects TRWH’s home state third and fourth-quarter revenue to decline by 15 percent, compared with prior forecasts calling for drops of seven percent and five percent, respectively. For 2020 and 2021, the analyst expects Twin River to post Rhode Island revenue and EBITDA of $278 million and $110 million and $282 million and $115 million.
He previously projected 2020 and 2021 Ocean State turnover of $307 million and $311 million.
Encore Boston Has Its Own Issues
While Wynn’s lone New England casino has become the region’s dominant gaming venue since opening in late June, the $175 million in third-quarter revenue generated there implies the property will miss its first-year GGR forecast of $800 million.
When the company reported results for the September quarter last week, it said adjusted property EBITDA in Massachusetts was $7.7 million, well below the $15 million Wall Street was expecting.
Still, it has become clear that Encore Boston Harbor is a serious problem for other New England casinos. TRWH’s August table game revenue at its namesake property in Lincoln, R.I. plunged 40 percent, while slot turnover dipped 16 percent. That was after July declines of 34 percent and 17 percent.
“In addition to modeling steeper y/y top-line declines, we have added conservatism to our Rhode Island margin forecast,” said Boyer.
While its home state has been problematic for TRWH, there are some bright spots for the company, including its Dover Downs property in Delaware. Boyer points out that TRWH can extract more value from the 500-room hotel there than the previous owners did, and that improvements in the gaming area and food and beverage offerings could pay off for investors.
The company also owns Arapahoe Park in Colorado, and earlier this year announced plans to acquire three casinos in Black Hawk, Colo., positioning the operator to potentially benefit from the recent legalization of sports betting there.
Boyer lowered his price target on TRWH to $28 from $30, but reiterated a “buy” rating on the stock.