Aggregate third quarter results from Macau’s big six operators have shown that VIP casino gross gaming revenue (GRR) accounted for only 44 percent—the lowest mix ever compared to revenue generated by mass segment play—of the gambling market in that period, according to Union Gaming Securities Asia Ltd.
Data released by Macau casino regulator Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) revealed that VIP baccarat GGR in the three months ending September 30 made up 52 percent of all the GGR generated by casino games.
“The DICJ quarterly numbers no longer paint an accurate picture due to table reclassifications,” Union Gaming analyst Grant Govertsen said in a note.
Table reclassification in Macau, according to analysts, frequently ends in overweight number when tallying VIP GGR, and an underweight one for mass market play.
Meanwhile, DICJ reported that Macau’s mass-market segment casino GGR, which includes slot machines and live multi game electronic tables, has expanded by 3.9 percent year-on-year in the third quarter of the year. However, Union Gaming pointed out that when the operators’ reported numbers for the period are taken into account, mass market gambling has, in fact, expanded by 11 percent year-on-year.
Despite all of the new supply on Cotai, mass table GGR in the city state grew slightly more than 1% – a sign that customers are stickier than had been originally thought, according to Govertsen.
“Data reported by Macau’s Big 6 operators shows that mass market tables actually grew 11% year-on-year in 3Q16, or 600bps better than the DICJ data. This is important as it shows mass turning the corner,” Govertsen said. “Within the 11 percent mass table growth during the third quarter 2016, we believe premium mass is also seeing growth; further, we think VIP could be on the cusp of returning to growth (although our estimates remain more cautious on VIP for a variety of reasons).”