The lower profit was due to less income from its British gaming operations, while profit in the previous corresponding period was boosted by a RM510mil one-off gain from the disposal of shares in its subsidiaries.
“Higher revenue was recorded at the group's non-leisure divisions, particularly the plantation division,'' Genting said in a statement yesterday.
Plantation revenue, via 53.8%-owned Asiatic Development Bhd, amounted to RM249.5mil, or 93% higher versus RM129mil a year earlier.
Genting said the plantation company achieved a higher crude palm oil selling price of RM3,403 per tonne in the January–March period against RM1,927 per tonne a year earlier.
An aerial view of Genting Highlands Resort
Asiatic released its first-quarter results on Wednesday.
Revenue at Genting's core leisure and hospitality division slipped 2% to RM1.44bil despite higher sales at Resorts World Bhd, operator of Genting Highlands Resort.
“The British gaming operations under Genting International Plc were affected by lower business volume, higher net bad debts written off and higher gaming duties,'' it said.
The group's power division delivered a 14% increase in sales to RM408mil, but Genting said rising coal prices “would likely affect” its operations in China.
It expects “satisfactory” group performance for the rest of the year.
In a separate announcement, 30.3%-owned Landmarks Bhd said its first-quarter net profit slumped to RM4.18mil against RM15.89mil a year earlier following the disposal of assets.
The group expects to post a lower profit for the year ending Dec 31 (FY08) compared with FY07, but said it “believes that Treasure Bay Bintan will contribute a significant portion of the group's profit going forward as we embark on our development programme.''
Landmarks has announced plans to develop resorts, condominiums, villas and entertainment facilities that may include gaming activities on 333ha. The project, called Treasure Bay, is on Pulau Bintan in Indonesia.