Moody’s raised its opinion of Las Vegas Sands Corp. based on the company’s early results at its $5.7 billion resort that opened in Singapore earlier this year.
The investors service said Thursday it was boosting it rating in Las Vegas Sands’ debt from B3 to B2 and assigned a positive rating outlook on the company.
In a report to investors, Moody’s senior vice president Keith Foley said the company is expected to derive the bulk of its revenues from the Marina Bay Sands, one of just two casinos in Singapore, and its three casinos in Macau.
Moody’s is not expecting much in the way of results from the Venetian or Palazzo, Las Vegas Sands two Strip casinos.
“We anticipate that strong future earnings performance at Las Vegas Sands’ Asian casinos will more than offset the earnings pressure that we expect will continue at the company’s U.S. subsidiary,” Foley said.
Las Vegas Sands partially opened the Marina Bay Sands in April and celebrated its grand opening in June. Other amenities at the hotel-casino are expected to open by the end of the year.
Marina Bay Sands and Resorts World Sentosa, which is operated by Genting of Malaysia, helped grow Singapore’s visitation by 18 percent in August and the market is up 22 percent for the year.
“Marina Bay Sands has the potential to significantly improve Las Vegas Sands’ financial profile once it is completed and fully operational,” Foley said.
Singapore, the analyst said, has just two casinos, a relatively low gaming tax rate and has advanced its tourism-related infrastructure. Las Vegas Sands also benefits from the rapid growth of gaming in Macau and the growing economies of Singapore’s primary feeder markets.
Foley said Moody’s would consider another upgrade, “if we have sufficient evidence that Marina Bay Sands is on track to meet our expectations.”
Contact reporter Howard Stutz at email@example.com or 702-477-3871.