Russian casino boost for Summit may not last

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A strong domestic market in the Russian Federation is the main reason behind a 37 per cent rise in revenues for Summit Ascent Holdings, the Hong Kong-listed casino operator.

The group, with major casinos in Russia and the Philippines, had total revenues in the half-year of €22.7m compared with €16.5m in the same period of last year. Adjusted EBITDA was €7.6m, up from the previous €2.1m. Profit was €15.7m compared with a loss of €1.03m.

Despite the success, the company said in a statement: “While the Russian tourism industry has been emerging from the coronavirus pandemic, it now faces huge uncertainty from the impact of the Russia-Ukraine conflict since late February 2022.

“Several governments, including the US, the European Union, the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, have announced that they have banned Russian aircrafts from their airspace, with several other countries following suit, and have issued travel advisories calling on their nationals to avoid travelling to the Russian Federation.

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“The Russian government responded with a mutual ban for these countries. Many Russian tourists are adversely affected due to economic sanctions against their country, handicapped by bank withdrawals while using the international credit card system.

“Meanwhile the Russian government is looking to develop and promote domestic tourism to include subsidy offers for local destinations and tax incentive provisions.”

This is now likely to impact the performance of the highly successful Tigre de Cristal casino (pictured) in the Russian Far East at Primorye Integrated Entertainment Zone, close to Vladivostok. It also has the Westside City Project in Manila, Philippines.

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