Dubai theme park operator DXB Entertainments narrows losses

The entrance to LegoLand at Dubai Parks & Resorts. (Supplied)
Updated 06 November 2018
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Dubai theme park operator DXB Entertainments narrows losses

  • Park attracts 501,394 visits in the third quarter
  • Still faces headwinds of tough tourism market

LONDON: Dubai theme park operator DXB Entertainments (DXBE) has posted a loss of 81 million dirhams ($22 million) for the third quarter as the company continues to battles headwinds in the tourism sector since the opening of its flagship theme park in late 2016.
The loss was an improvement on the 105 million dirhams earnings before interest, taxes and amortization (EBITDA) loss the company reported in the third quarter of 2017, according to the filing on the Dubai stock exchange.
The company’s main asset — Dubai Parks and Resorts — which features attractions inspired by “The Hunger Games” film as well as Bollywood Parks and Legoland, opened the first phase of the park in 2016.
Visitor numbers have grown since then reaching 501,394 in the third quarter, a 5 percent increase on the same quarter last year. Year-to-date more than 1.9 million people have visited the park, an increase of 33 percent on the previous year.
Revenue however has slipped in the third quarter, reaching 103 million dirhams compared to 115 million dirhams in the same time period in 2017.
The third quarter is typically considered a slower period of growth due to the heat of the summer season putting off visitors.
DXBE is aiming to increase the number of international visitors to its parks, launching a number of joint advertising campaigns with Dubai’s flagship airline Emirates and Dubai Airports in the last quarter, according to its statement.
Mohamed Almulla, CEO and managing director, DXBE, said in a statement that the company would also be revising its pricing structure to increase admissions revenue.
“Increasing in-park spend is an additional revenue driver which we are focused on through a review of merchandise and F&B options offered in the parks,” he said.
He said that the business would continue “to focus on reaching EBITDA breakeven and we have achieved 51 percent improvement during the first nine months of 2018."


US-China trade deal hopes grow as oil prices decline

Updated 19 June 2019
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US-China trade deal hopes grow as oil prices decline

  • Data suggested a smaller-than-expected fall in American crude inventories
  • Preparations underway for Donald Trump to meet Xi Jinping next week at the G20 summit in Osaka

LONDON: Oil prices declined on Wednesday as data suggested a smaller-than-expected fall in American crude inventories, as hopes for a US-China trade deal continue to grow.
Brent crude futures were down 51 cents at $61.72 a barrel.
US West Texas Intermediate crude fell 25 cents to $53.65 a barrel. On Tuesday, it had recorded its biggest daily rise since early January.
After weeks of swelling, US crude stocks fell by 812,000 barrels last week to 482 million, the American Petroleum Institute said on Tuesday, a smaller fall than the 1.1-million-barrel drop analysts had expected.
Official estimates on US crude stockpiles from the US government’s Energy Information Administration are due during afternoon trading.
US President Donald Trump offered some support, saying preparations were underway for him to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping next week at the G20 summit in Osaka, Japan, amid hopes a trade deal could be thrashed out between the two powers. Trump has repeatedly threatened China with tariffs since winning office in 2016.
European Central Bank President Mario Draghi also offered a boost, saying on Tuesday that he would ease policy again if inflation failed to accelerate.
Tensions remain high in the Middle East after last week’s tanker attacks. Fears of a confrontation between Iran and the US have mounted, with Washington blaming Tehran, which has denied any role.
Trump said he was prepared to take military action to stop Iran having a nuclear bomb but left open whether he would approve the use of force to protect Gulf oil supplies.
On Wednesday, oil markets shrugged off a rocket attack on a site in southern Iraq used by foreign oil companies.
“It is interesting to note that the crude oil futures market could not rally on hawks planting bombs in the Strait of Hormuz but could rally on doves planting quantitative easing,” Petromatrix’s Olivier Jakob said in a note.
“This is an oil market that doesn’t know how to react when an oil tanker blows up but knows how to react when the head of a central bank makes some noise.”
Members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries have agreed to meet on July 1, followed by a meeting with non-OPEC allies on July 2, after weeks of wrangling over dates.
OPEC and its allies will discuss whether to extend a deal on cutting 1.2 million barrels per day of production that runs out this month.