Boyd Gaming’s Fremont Hotel & Casino in downtown Las Vegas is expanding its casino floor and replacing its former buffet with a new dining hall concept. Executives for the company made the announcement during a call with investors held on Tuesday, in which the company also reported record first-quarter revenues.
The new dining hall is set to feature six “quick-serve” restaurants, including nationally known brands yet to be unveiled, Boyd President and CEO Keith Smith said on the call, according to KSNV. The hall will replace the buffet's former location, and also use a piece of vacant land behind the building.
Meanwhile, the casino space will be expanded using property “behind the wall,” which would not affect existing operations at the venue. The move is set to help Boyd better leverage its location in the heart of the busy Fremont Street Experience pedestrian mall, “especially during weekends.” Both enhancements are expected to be completed by early 2023.
Boyd Gaming maintained its operating momentum with record first-quarter results for the period ended March 31, 2022. The business posted revenues of $860.7 million, up 14.3% from $753.3 million in Q1 2021; and reported a net income of $162.9 million, compared to $102.2 million for the year-ago period.
“Our disciplined approach to managing the business and strategic focus on our core customer once again produced exceptional results,” commented Smith. “During the quarter, strong performance from our core customers and sustained efficiencies in our marketing and operations contributed to record revenue, EBITDAR and margin performances on a companywide basis.”
Total Adjusted EBITDAR for the period was $338.8 million, increasing 15.8% from $292.6 million posted in Q1 2021. Meanwhile, Adjusted Earnings for the first quarter of 2022 were $157.5 million, compared to $105.7 million for the same period last year.
Additionally, the company took what Smith calls “an important step” in advancing its online gaming strategy with the agreement in March to acquire Pala Interactive. The move is set to provide the business the technology and expertise needed “to build a leading regional online casino gaming operation,” Boyd’s CEO told investors.
Boyd Gaming's Keith Smith
The gaming and hospitality company first announced it would be purchasing California-based iGaming company Pala Interactive on March 28. The deal sees Boyd acquiring the business -founded in 2013 by the Pala Band of Mission Indians- and its subsidiaries for total cash consideration of $170 million, and is expected to drive growth within online the segment.
Boyd, which has a 5% equity ownership in sports gaming giant FanDuel, also expects that leveraging FanDuel’s brand and expertise will contribute “approximately $30 million in EBITDAR” to the company's results this year.
“We also continued to execute our robust capital return program, repurchasing $132 million in stock during the first quarter and reinstating our quarterly cash dividend,” concluded Smith. “In all, the first quarter was an excellent start to 2022, as our proven operating strategy and experienced team continue to create long-term value for our shareholders.”
Breaking down results for Q1 shows the business posted first-quarter Adjusted EBITDAR records in each of its three operating segments -Las Vegas Locals, Downtown Las Vegas, Midwest & South-, as well as first-quarter revenue records in both the Las Vegas Locals and Midwest & South segments.
Boyd's Main Street casino in Vegas
In comparison, breaking down revenue for the quarter by vertical shows gaming remains Boyd’s primary source of revenue, delivering $668 million in revenue during the period, up 8.1% year-on-year. Food and beverage posted a modest 4.4% increase to $63.7 million, while room revenue delivered a notable 63.1% jump to $42.4 million.
The company has much to look ahead for the future. Construction work is continuing on the Sky River Casino in Northern California, which Boyd is to manage on behalf of the Wilton Rancheria Tribe. The property is on budget and on schedule to open early this autumn with 2,000 slot machines, 80 table games and 17 food and beverage venues.
Additionally, the company targets a summer start to begin construction on a land-based facility at Louisiana's Treasure Chest Casino, which will replace the existing riverboat venue. The development is projected to be finalized by 2023.