Caesars Entertainment Corp. (CZR:US), the casino company restructuring almost $23 billion in debt, reported a wider first-quarter loss amid continued weakness in some U.S. markets.
The net loss increased to $386.4 million, or $2.82 a share, from $217.6 million a year earlier, Las Vegas-based Caesars said today in a statement. Revenue fell 1.9 percent to $2.1 billion.
Caesars, the largest owner of casinos in the U.S., generates less cash than it needs to service debt taken on in a $30.7 billion leveraged buyout in 2008, led by Apollo Global Management LLC (APO:US) and TPG Capital. To stay solvent, the company has sold assets, transferred properties between units, refinanced some of its debt and sold equity.
Gambling revenue is declining in some of Caesars’ largest markets, such as Atlantic City and the U.S. midwest. In Las Vegas, revenue rose 5.6 percent to $794 million.
“Las Vegas remained a bright spot with strength in the hospitality categories, but regional business trends were unfavorably impacted by extreme weather and softness in visitation,” Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Gary Loveman said in the statement. “Strategic investments in Las Vegas over the last few years are beginning to bear fruit.”
Yesterday, the company announced a minority investment in its largest unit, a move that allowed it to revoke a guarantee on a big portion of its obligations. The deals sets the stage for a broader restructing of the company’s borrowings, and drove the stock to its biggest gain since April 2013.
Caesars rose 14 percent to $21.18 at the close in New York, before today’s results. The stock is down 1.7 percent this year.
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