By James A. Loyola
Belle Corporation, a property and gaming unit of the SM Group, reported a 19 percent jump in recurring net income to P2.94 billion for the nine months of 2018 from the P2.47 billion reached in the same period last year.
However, the firm disclosed to the Philippine Stock Exchange that its consolidated net income of P2.68 billion for the 2018 period was up only 1 percent compared to the P2.65 billion achieved in the 2017 period.
Belle explained that the lower growth rate was due mainly to one-time gains recorded in 2017 from sales of non-core investments and properties.
Through its subsidiary, Premium Leisure Corporation (PLC), Belle’s earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) from its income share in the gaming operations of City of Dreams Manila increased by 30 percent to P1.84 billion for the first nine months of 2018 from P1.42 billion for the comparable 2017 period.
PLC has an operating agreement with the Philippine affiliate of Melco Resorts and Entertainment Limited (Melco) that accords PLC a share of gaming revenues or earnings at City of Dreams Manila.
Belle also realized increased EBITDA from its real estate businesses of P1.79 billion for the first nine months of 2018, an 8 percent increase from approximately P1.66 billion for the 2017 period.
A significant portion of this real estate-related EBITDA (P1.54 billion) was derived from Belle’s lease of the land and buildings comprising City of Dreams Manila to Melco.
The balance came from sales of real estate products and property management activities at its Tagaytay Highlands and Midlands residential and leisure complexes south of Metro Manila.