Genting Hong Kong, parent company to Star Cruises, has released its earnings for the first half of 2011.

The Group’s total revenue for 1H 2011 was US$227.0 million, an increase of 22.9% from US$184.7 million in 1H 2010. The increase in total revenue was mainly due to the 32.2% increase in gaming revenue in 1H 2011 and 10.8% increase in capacity days as a result of the full operations of SuperStar Libra in 1H 2011, whilst it was laid up in the first quarter of 2010. Occupancy percentage increased by 2% from 82% to 84% in 1H 2011 which contributed towards a 13.6 % increase in ticket and onboard revenue for the period.

The ongoing fleet changes, which included the refurbishment and relocation of Star Pisces from Malaysia to Hong Kong as well as the relocation of SuperStar Libra and SuperStar Aquarius to Malaysia and Taiwan regions respectively contributed towards the improvement in gaming revenue

Total costs and expenses before finance costs and other items for 1H 2011 amounted to US$203.5 million compared with US$168.1 million in 1H 2010, an increase of US$35.4 million.

Operating expenses excluding depreciation and amortization increased US$25.1 million (23.9%) to US$130.2 million in 1H 2011 from US$105.1 million in 1H 2010, primarily due to a 26.8% increase in ship operating expenses, mainly resulting from the increase in capacity days, payroll, port charges and higher fuel expenditure. In 1H 2011, Star Asia’s average fuel price rose approximately 21.5% from US$480 per metric ton in 1H 2010 to US$583 per metric ton in 1H 2011. Excluding fuel expenses, total operating expenses increased by 22.3%, representing a 10.4% increase on a per capacity day basis compared with 1H 2010.

Selling, general and administrative expenses excluding depreciation and amortization increased by US$6.3 million (21.6%) to US$35.4 million in 1H 2011 from US$29.1 million in 1H 2010 mainly due to higher salary related costs, and advertising and promotion expenses in 1H 2010.

Depreciation and amortization expenses increased by US$4.1 million (12.1%) primarily due to the depreciation of. Norwegian Dream which has been reclassified to property, plant and equipment from non-current assets held-for-sale since December 2010

Finance costs increased by US$2.4 million to US$15.8 million for 1H 2011 compared to US$13.4 million for 1H 2010, primarily due to the write-off of amortized loan arrangement fees upon the refinancing of loans in 1H 2011.

Net other income was US$13.8 million for 1H 2011 compared with US$14.4 million for 1H 2010

During 1H 2011, net other income mainly comprised the agreed settlement of US$13.3 million in relation to the non-completion by Louis Plc. of the sale and purchase contract for Norwegian Dream.

During 1H 2010, the net other income comprised a realised gain of approximately US$17.6 million on the disposal of interest in Port Klang Cruise Centre Sdn Bhd and Glamourous Trendy Sdn Bhd for approximately US$55.6 million

Highlights include:

* Profit for the Group in 1H 2011 was US$61.8 million, increased 445.6% compared with US$11.3 million in 1H 2010

* Contributions from jointly controlled entities, Travellers International Hotel Group, Inc. and its subsidiaries (“Travellers Group”) and NCL Corporation Ltd. and its subsidiaries (“NCLC Group”), during the period were US$25.7 million and US$12.3 million, respectively. Share of profit from Travellers Group increased US$15.5 million from the same period in 2010 when Travellers Group was classified as an associate, while share of profit from NCLC Group was US$12.3 million in 1H 2011 compared with a share of loss of US$18.7 million in 1H 2010

* EBITDA for the period improved 21.8% to US$61.5 million, compared with US$50.5 million for the same period in 2010

* Capacity days increased by 10.8% from approximately 0.8 million to 0.9 million capacity days due to the full operations of SuperStar Libra in 1H 2011

* Total revenue increased by 22.9% from US$184.7 million in 1H 2010 to US$ 227.0 million in 1H 2011 mainly due to the 32.2% increase in gaming revenue from 1H 2010

* Operating expenses excluding depreciation and amortization increased by 23.8% in 1H 2011, mainly due to higher fuel costs and payroll and related operating costs

* Selling, general and administrative expenses excluding depreciation and amortization increased by 21.6% in 1H 2011 mainly due to increases in payroll, and advertising and promotion expenses

* Operating profit was US$23.5 million for 1H 2011, a 41.5% improvement compared with US$16.6 million in 1H 2010