Saskatchewan

SaskGaming reports 'successful' year despite downward trend in casino profits

SaskGaming is reporting a profit of $44.9 million from the province's casinos, continuing a downward trend that started in 2015-16.

Annual report attributes downward trend to state of gaming industry, Sask. economy, increased competition

More than three million guests were recorded at SaskGaming's two casinos, one in Regina and one in Moose Jaw, in the year ending March, 2019. (Mike Groll/Associated Press)

SaskGaming is reporting profits of $44.9 million coming from the province's two casinos for the fiscal year but it is a continuation of a downward trend that started in 2015-16. 

The provincial corporation said in its annual report, released Friday, the net income for the latest financial period, which ended March 31, dropped by $0.7 million compared to 2017-2018. 

"This trend is as a result of a number of factors, including a mature Canadian gaming industry, a slowing Saskatchewan economy and increased gaming competition in the province," a report said.

It said revenues from slots and table games had also dropped as part of an overall downward trend in revenues since 2014. 

"Meanwhile, other jurisdictions across the Canadian gaming industry have begun to see increasing results," said the report.  

"These increases are largely attributed to the introduction of new gaming channels and increased capacity that has not been available to SaskGaming."

Half of the $44.9 million net income it received in 2018-19 will be going to the provincial General Revenue Fund. 

Of the $22.4 million allocated to the GRF, half will go to the government's Community Initiatives Fund and the other half to the First Nations Trust. 

3 million guests between 2 casinos

More than three million guests were counted at Casino Regina and Casino Moose Jaw, the two gambling centres operated by SaskGaming, in 2019. 

More than 2.6 million of those guests were at Casino Regina, while more than 600,000 were recorded at the Casino Moose Jaw. 

From the remaining $25 million, SaskGaming paid a dividend of $18 million to the Crown Investments Corporation and retained $4.5 million as earnings.

SaskGaming reported a three per cent increase in operating expenses ($0.2 million).

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