Casinos Austria International Posts Net Profit of $7.9 million

Casinos Austria International Limited (CAIL) the Australian subsidiary of Austrian based Casinos Austria Group today announced a consolidated net profit after tax of AU$ 7.9 million for the financial year ended 31 December 2002. Profit before tax and minority interests was AU$ 14.2 million. Income tax was AU$ 4.1 million while minority interests were AU$ 2.2 million.

On an operating (like-for-like) basis, 2002s net profit after tax compares with AU$ 4.2 million for the previous financial year. Therefore, CAILs overall operating profits have improved by AU$ 3.7 million or 88%.

The directors have declared a dividend of 3 cents per share franked to 0.5 cents. The record date is the 26 March 2003 and the payment date is 24 April 2003. (2001: also 3 cents).

Mr Ben Macdonald, CAILs Executive Chairman said, The main reason for the improvement in bottom-line result is due to increased profit contributions from major CAIL operations in Canada, Australia and South Africa.

The Great Blue Heron Casino located just outside of Toronto, Canada recorded gross gaming revenues better than budget and last year. CAILs management fee is based on profit sharing for table games and a percentage of revenues for gaming machines.

CAILs share of profits of the Reef Casino Trust (owner of the Reef Hotel Casino in Cairns) has increased significantly from 3.5% to 30.6% reflecting CAILs ownership interests in the Trust. The Reef Casino Trust recorded a net profit of AU$ 8.4 million for the 2002 financial year, 2% better than the previous year.

Higher gaming revenues recorded by the three South African casino operations. A fourth casino, the Garden Route Casino commenced operations in December 2002 and will have a positive impact on earnings in 2003.

CAILs Egyptian casinos also contributed positively to CAILs group results as did our shipboard casinos. However, CAILs Maritime operations based in Florida, USA are still recovering from the post September 11 downturn. Casino Canberra continues to operate in a very challenging operational environment handicapped by the lack of gaming machines.

Mr Macdonald said, In the last couple of years, a feature of CAILs earnings has been growth sourced from a wider geographical diversity of operations. This is particularly pleasing given that the highly successful Oasis Hotel Casino Resort remains closed due to problems in the Middle East.

CAIL continues to seek opportunities around the world under the development agreement in conjunction with its parent company.