Dover Downs’ profit drops to $32,000 as competition takes its toll

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Dover Downs Gaming & Entertainment eked out a $32,000 profit in the second quarter as revenues continued to be affected by an abundance of casinos.

The company’s revenues for the second quarter were $43.3 million compared with $46.2 million for the second quarter of 2016.

Gaming revenues were $36.4 million compared to $39.1 million for the second quarter of last year. The decrease is primarily attributable to increased competition in the mid-Atlantic gaming market, a release stated.

Other operating revenues decreased to $6.9 from $7.2 million for the second quarter of 2016 primarily due to lower banquet revenue in the second quarter of 2017.

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Occupancy levels in the Dover Downs Hotel were approximately 85 percent for the second quarter of 2017 compared with 88 percent during the second quarter last year.

The net earnings of $32,000 were far lower than the $796,000 for the second quarter of 2016.

The state’s three racinos have been seeking relief from Delaware’s high “take” on revenues. However, those efforts have failed. This year, the state faced a nearly $400 million budget gap that left no room for assistance.

Casino revenues have fallen sharply since the golden years of the 1990s and early 2000s as Maryland and Pennsylvania aggressively added casinos.

The latest casino in the region is the $1 billion MGM National Harbor, Las Vegas-style casino across the river from Washington, D.C.

Also, Monster Mile NASCAR track operator Dover Motorsports, Inc., a company that shares facilities with Dover Downs reported slightly higher net income in the second quarter.

Revenues for the second quarter increased slightly to $25.6 million from $25.2 million for the second quarter of 2016.

The increase is primarily from the scheduled increase in broadcasting revenue, partially offset by lower admissions revenue for the Dover NASCAR weekend.

Net earnings for the second quarter of 2017 were $5.2 million compared to $5,066,000 in the second quarter of 2016.

On July 21, the NASCAR track operator extended an agreement for the sale of a Nashville facility for an additional thirty days to allow for time to finalize agreements for a restructured transaction that contemplates the immediate sale of 150 acres at $35,000 per acre and the grant of a three-year option on an additional 150 acres at $55,000 per acre. The track was closed, due to a lack of races. Dover still owns 1,000 acres.

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