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ARGOSY GAMING COMPANY REPORTS FIRST QUARTER EARNINGS

 ALTON, Ill., April 29 /PRNewswire/ -- Argosy Gaming Company (NASDAQ: ARGY), operators of the Alton Belle Casino, the first riverboat gambling casino in Illinois, announced results for its first quarter ended March 31, 1993.
 Casino revenue for the quarter ended March 31, 1993 totaled $12.2 million compared to $12.1 million for the first quarter ended March 31, 1992. For the first quarter ended March 31, 1993, net revenue was $13.9 million compared to $14.1 million in the first quarter of 1992. For the first quarter ended March 31, 1993, win per passenger was $67, compared to $62 in the first quarter of 1992.
 Prior to the initial public offering of its common stock on February 25, 1993, the company's operations were taxed as an S-Corporation. In order to present earnings per share data that is comparable between years, the company has reported pro-forma earnings per share information, as if they had been a public company taxable as a C-Corporation for the entire quarter.
 Pro-forma net income per share was $0.12 for the three month period ended March 31, 1993 compared to $0.13 in the first quarter 1992. For the quarter ended March 31, 1993 the company's income from operations and net income were $4.3 million and $3.8 million respectively, compared to $6.4 million and $4.9 million respectively for the quarter ended March 31, 1992. The decrease in income from operations and net income during the quarter ended March 31, 1993 was primarily due to increased operating costs and expenses.
 Operating expenses increased from $7.7 million in the first quarter of 1992, to $9.5 million in the first quarter of 1993, representing an increase of $1.8 million. Among the items contributing to the $1.8 million increase in operating expense were: a one-time charge of $325,000 for a termination benefit paid to a former officer, $455,000 for development costs associated with identifying potential new gaming opportunities in other jurisdictions, $510,000 for increased selling, general and administrative costs associated with costs of managing a public company, and $265,000 of additional casino costs for increased recruitment and training for its casino personnel required to staff the new Alton Belle Casino II.
 J. Thomas Long, chief executive officer said, "We are extremely pleased with the increase in casino revenue in the first quarter, which occurred despite a very severe winter in metropolitan St. Louis, including more days of heavy snow than in first quarter 1992. This reflects our strong win to passenger ratio, and is a result of our ability to attract the premium wagerer."
 Argosy Gaming Company owns and operates the Alton Belle Riverboat Casino on the Mississippi River in Alton, approximately 20 miles northeast of downtown St. Louis. The company expects that the new Alton Belle Casino II, a three-level cruiseliner, will begin operations on Memorial Day weekend. This casino will accommodate approximately 1,200 patrons compared to 490 patrons on the current Alton Belle.
 The company also is actively pursuing gaming opportunities in Missouri and Louisiana, where gaming legislation has been adopted, as well as in Indiana and Ontario, Canada, where no legislation authorizing commercial gaming has yet been adopted. The company has not been granted a gaming license in any of these jurisdictions.
 -0- 4/29/93
 /CONTACT: G. Dan Marshall Argosy Gaming Company, 618-474-7540/
 (ARGY)


CO: Argosy Gaming Company ST: Illinois IN: CNO SU: ERN

TS -- NY071 -- 2658 04/29/93 12:26 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 29, 1993
Words:581
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