his compares with a year-over-year increase in overall gross gaming revenue for Macau of 7% for May 2012.
For the first five months of 2012, AERL’s Rolling Chip Turnover was us$ 8.701 billion (an average of us$ 1.740 billion per month), up 26% year-over-year, compared to us$ 6.902 billion (an average of us$ 1.380 billion per month) for the first five months of 2011.
AERL’s growth of 26% year-over-year to date compares favorably to an overall low-teens Macau VIP growth rate during the first five months of 2012. Overall, Macau gross gaming revenue increased 21% for the first five months of 2012.
The growth in Rolling Chip Turnover was attributable to organic growth and increasing cage capital from retained earnings. “Although May was a slow month in Macau, we were pleased to once again outpace overall Macau revenue growth,” said AERL Chairman Lam. “We are hopeful that Rolling Chip Turnover growth will pick up during the upcoming months.”
The company’s VIP rooms are primarily focused on high stakes baccarat. Baccarat accounts for approximately 88% of total Macau casino winnings according to the Macau Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ). In Macau, two remuneration methods are used to compensate VIP room gaming promoters. On a fixed commission basis, VIP room gaming promoter revenues are based on an agreed percentage of Rolling Chip Turnover. On a win/loss split basis, the VIP room gaming promoter receives an agreed percentage of the “win” in the VIP gaming room (plus certain incentive allowances), and is required to also bear the same percentage of losses that might be incurred. Compared to the fixed commission basis, the win/loss split basis subjects the VIP room gaming promoter to the risk of losses from the gaming patron’s activity and greater volatility.
AERL’s VIP rooms at the Galaxy Star World in Downtown Macau, Venetian Macao-Resort-Hotel and Galaxy Macau in Cotai are based on a fixed commission. Because all of AERL’s revenues are now directly related to Rolling Chip Turnover, the Company is concentrating its marketing efforts to increase the number of patrons and the amount of play at its VIP gaming rooms. Consequently, in order to increase the Rolling Chip Turnover, the company reinvests its earnings to increase the amount of cage capital available to finance the increased patron activity.
Definition of Rolling Chip Turnover
Rolling Chip Turnover is used by casinos to measure the volume of VIP business transacted and represents the aggregate amount of bets players make. Bets are wagered with "non-negotiable chips” and winning bets are paid out by casinos in so-called "cash” chips.
"Non-negotiable chips” are specifically designed for VIP players to allow casinos to calculate the commission payable to VIP room gaming promoters. Commissions are paid based on the total amount of "non-negotiable chips” purchased by each player. VIP room gaming promoters therefore require the players to "roll,” from time to time, their "cash chips” into "non-negotiable” chips for further betting so that they may receive their commissions. Through the promoters, "non-negotiable chips” can be converted back into cash at any time. Betting using rolling chips, as opposed to using cash chips, is also used by the DICJ to distinguish between VIP table revenue and mass market table revenue.