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The Star records net loss of $4.4M due to the absence of high-end players

Australia’s Star Entertainment Group faced another setback as it disclosed a net loss of AU$6.8 million ($4.4 million) in the first quarter of 2024, attributed to the ongoing absence of high-end players.

In its quarterly trading update released on Friday, the company outlined a significant 19.3 percent year-on-year decrease in revenue from premium gaming rooms at The Star Sydney. Additionally, premium gaming revenue saw declines of 20 percent at The Star Gold Coast and 28 percent at Treasury Brisbane.

Although there was a slight uptick in performance on the main gaming floors – The Star Sydney saw a 5.4 percent year-on-year rise, The Star Gold Coast experienced a 4.6 percent increase, and Treasury Brisbane recorded a 6.4 percent improvement – overall net revenue still fell by 4.6 percent compared to the March 2023 quarter, totaling AU$419.2 million ($274 million).

The company reported normalized EBITDA of AU$37.9 million ($24.7 million) for the quarter, AU$20.2 million ($13.2 million) of this was generated in January, declining to AU$10.3 million ($6.7 million) in February and AU$7.4 million ($4.8 million) in March.

The Star highlighted that expenses linked to enhancing its capabilities in the risk, controls, and transformation departments are steadily increasing. These costs escalated from AU$90.3 million ($58.9 million) per month in the first half of the financial year to AU$92.1 million ($60.1 million) per month at the beginning of 2024.

The Star was recently hit with a second official inquiry into the operations of its Star Sydney property, with the commencement of a secondary investigation scheduled to begin on Monday.

Meanwhile, the company faces many executives’ departures, with its CEO Robbie Cooke and Chief Financial Officer Christina Katsibouba resigning last month.

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