Las Vegas Sands Corporate Jet Tab Takes Off, Second Among S&P 500 Firms

Las Vegas Sands (NYSE: LVS) spent $3.2 million on corporate jet travel for high-ranking executives in 2022, the second-highest tally among all S&P 500 member firms.

Sands Jet
A Las Vegas Sands corporate jet takes off in Las Vegas. The company spent $3.2 million last year on private plane travel for executives. (Image: X)

The largest casino operator by market capitalization shelled out $3.2 million for the perk in 2022, slightly less than half the $6.6 million spent on the amenity by Facebook parent Meta Platforms (NASDAQ: META), reports the Wall Street Journal.

At the close of US trading today, Sands had a market capitalization of $36.95 billion, indicating the private air travel expenditures barely dent the company’s overall value.

In 2022, S&P 500 companies spent $65 million on corporate airfare for C-suite executives, nearly double the $33.8 million in related expenses incurred in 2021. Looked at another way, alone Las Vegas Sands represented about 5% of all private airfare for S&P 500 companies in 2022.

Sands Private Jet Spending Gaining Altitude

Sands’ 2022 tab of $3.2 million for private air travel represents a quadrupling from the $800,000 the company doled out the prior year.

In the casino business, it’s a given that companies will spend capital on private planes to bring “whale” gamblers to Las Vegas or other locations. That’s simply industry protocol.

Specific to Sands, the company no longer has US properties. But the company is rumored to be interested in bringing integrated resorts to Florida, New York, and Texas. Additionally, the operator’s current roster of casino hotels is comprised entirely of Marina Bay Sands in Singapore and five venues in Macau. It is likely executives based in Nevada are going to those Asia-Pacific properties at various points in any given year.

Private jet travel is considered a perk that’s part of broader compensation packages for high-level executives such as chief executive and chief financial officers. It’s often viewed as a matter of efficiency and one that many companies, including Sands, can afford.

Purchase prices on private jets can run anywhere from $2 million to $100 million with annual maintenance costs of $500,000 to $1 million, according to LunaJets. That doesn’t include flights, which can carry costs of $1,100 to $2,700 per hour depending upon the size of the aircraft.

LunaJets also noted other costs, including hangar rent of up $3,000 per month and pilot salaries, which can range from $86,000 to $300,000 per year depending upon experience.

Expect More Corporate Jet Travel, not Less

Data indicate that corporate jet travel has accelerated since the coronavirus pandemic and that the 2023 figures are likely to outpace those notched in 2022.

While Las Vegas Sands is the biggest spend on private jet travel among gaming companies residing in the S&P 500, it’s far from the only firm in the industry that incurs such expenses.

While some compensation critics and investors decry those expenditures, some companies believe the costs are necessary to reduce lost time and provide enhanced security to marquee executives.

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