Analysts forecasting slow Singapore recovery


It could reportedly take up to four years for the two large integrated casino resorts in Singapore to fully recover from the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic and post aggregated annual gross gaming revenues anywhere near those seen for 2019.

According to a report from Inside Asian Gaming, this is the view of Sanford C Bernstein Limited analysts Kelsey Zhu, Louis Li and Vitaly Umansky and comes after the city-state experienced a comparatively large coronavirus-induced decline in its aggregated gross gaming revenues for 2020 to approximately $829 million. The source detailed that the specialists forecast that this pandemic hangover could now last until 2025 as strong mass-market demand is countered by a more sluggish VIP segment.

Listless launch:

Singapore is home to the 2,561-room Marina Bay Sands facility from Las Vegas Sands Corporation as well as Genting Malaysia Berhad’s 120-acre Resorts World Sentosa development. The Sandford C Bernstein Limited analysts reportedly explained that they envisage these venues posting aggregated gross gaming revenues for this year of about $943 million, which would equate to a rise of 12% year-on-year, before chalking up a further 50% improvement for the whole of 2022 to somewhere near $1.35 billion.

Proximate probability:

However, the trio reportedly forecast that the two facilities expected $1.73 billion in combined gross gaming revenues for 2025 would be slightly lower than the $1.85 billion recorded for the whole of 2019 despite a considerable uptick in their mass-market and non-gaming businesses. Although this former figure would represent 94% of pre-pandemic levels, the analysts nevertheless purportedly declared that the future ‘remains uncertain’ owing to the prospects of Singapore ‘loosening’ travel restrictions for those coming from ‘feeder markets’ such Malaysia and Indonesia.

Reportedly read a statement from Zhu, Li and Umansky…

“We expect mass-market gross gaming revenues and non-gaming to be back to normal in 2023. Longer term, we forecast Singapore market gross gaming revenues to recover to around 94% of 2019 levels by 2025 with mass-market recovering above historical levels but VIP remaining sluggish.”

Future fate:

Looking beyond 2025 and the three analysts reportedly disclosed that the opening of planned expansions for Resorts World Sentosa and Marina Bay Sands later in the decade will likely push the market into a growth phase. They purportedly moreover asserted that both properties had recently exceeded first-quarter expectations as the latter’s slot business recovered to reach pre-pandemic levels owing to local demand.

Fresh fears:

Despite all this, Zhu, Li and Umansky reportedly pronounced that Singapore nonetheless remains a bastion of short-term uncertainty thanks to the recent reintroduction of maximum capacity restrictions brought on by a rise in coronavirus infections. Yet they purportedly finished by forecasting that the jurisdiction could this year see inbound tourism numbers rise to reach 73% of their 2019 levels.