Golden Entertainment grows revenue in fourth quarter 2015 and full year

The bar area is busy during the Grand Opening of PT’s Brewing Company at 3101 N. Tenaya Way.

The Las Vegas-based gaming company whose business includes multiple Nevada casinos and the PT’s tavern chain, as well as a huge route of slot machines inside grocery stores and similar spots, reported its fourth quarter and full-year earnings Wednesday.

Company: Golden Entertainment Inc. (NASDAQ: GDEN)

Revenue: $86.4 million for the fourth quarter, up substantially from $12.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2014. For the full year, Golden Entertainment’s net revenue was $177 million, compared to $55.2 million in 2014.

The huge year over year increases reflect the merger that created what is now Golden Entertainment on July 31. The 2014 results only include the former Lakes Entertainment, a small public company that owned the Rocky Gap casino in Maryland. The former Golden Gaming bought Lakes Entertainment in the merger, bringing with it three Pahrump casinos, dozens of taverns and hundreds of slot route locations.

Golden Entertainment also reported certain figures pretending as if the merger was in effect for all of 2015 and 2014. Using those metrics, net revenue was up 3.2 percent for the fourth quarter and 2.9 percent for the full year.

Earnings: $23.4 million for the fourth quarter, compared to a loss of $78,000 in the fourth quarter last year. The company said 2014’s results included about $500,000 in merger expenses and a $1.4 million gain on sale of a cost method investment.

For the full year, Golden Entertainment said its net income was $24.5 million, compared to a net loss of $24.8 million one year earlier. Full-year 2014 results also included about $500,000 in merger expenses, as well as $21 million in impairments and other losses from an investment in Rock Ohio Ventures and a $2.5 million charge that was “related to an arbitration award,” according to a company statement. 2014 results also included a $2.4 million gain on sale of a cost method investment, according to a company statement.

Earnings per share: $1.06 in the fourth quarter, compared to a loss of less than one cent per share in 2014. For the full year, the company reported income of $1.43 per share, compared to a loss of $1.86 per share in 2014.

What it means: Golden Entertainment’s business is divided into two main segments: distributed gaming, which includes the taverns and slot route, and casinos, which includes the three in Pahrump and one in Maryland.

Using the figures that pretend as if the merger was in effect during 2014 as well, distributed gaming revenue for the fourth quarter of 2015 was $63.3 million, up 4.2 percent from the year before. Casino revenue, meanwhile, was $23.1 million, up less than one percent from 2014.

Golden Entertainment has continued to expand even after its big merger last year. It bought about 1,000 gambling devices from a Montana distributed gaming operator in January, a transaction that also included “certain nongaming assets and the right to operate within certain locations,” according to the company statement. The Montana deal amounted to a total consideration of about $20.1 million, the statement said.

Additionally, Golden Entertainment has said it will open six new taverns in Southern Nevada this year. Its new brewing concept, PT’s Brewing Company, opened on Feb. 10.

CEO Blake Sartini said in the company statement that 2015 ended with a strong quarter that demonstrated the merger’s “initial benefits.” He said the company would keep focusing on its “unique growth opportunities” in 2016 while “enhancing productivity” in each of its business areas.

The company had total outstanding debt of $148.6 million at the end of the year.