Asia round-up: Manipulation, revenue drops and a minimum $618m in capital

Okada claims son “manipulated” into turning against him

asia news round up macau again 1 gambling insider web image

Kazuo Okada, known by his employees as 'Daddy O,' has claimed his son Tomohiro is being manipulated by Universal Entertainment Corp (UEC), the company he founded in 1969. He claims said manipulation is designed to split the family and take control of his Okada Manila resort in the Philippines, a resort he assumed control of under controversial circumstances in May 2022.

The embattled former chairman of UEC also defended his actions in taking control of the Manila resort, saying: “As a matter of principle, UEC and Okada Manila are business entities that have grown over the past 50 years under my vision and leadership, with the cooperation of various people. This is the unquestionable truth, no matter who you ask.”

Paradise Co announces KRW 18.6bn profit

South Korean foreign-player-only casino operator, Paradise Co, has made a Q2 profit attributable to shareholders of KRW 18.6bn (US$14m) – a sum which represents a 2% drop on the previous year.

However, the profit – made due to a one-off gain from the disposal of a building – made for better reading than Q1, which saw Paradise make net losses of KRW 28.58bn.

Overall, the news is disappointing, as Paradise’s casino sales dropped by 6% on the previous year and, without the disposal of a building, the casino operator would have posted another loss.

Wynn Macau reports 8% revenue drop

As Macau’s restrictions continue to ravage the gambling culture in the regions, Wynn Resorts has posted an 8% revenue drop – which it primarily attributes to the lockdown imposed by the Macau Government.

As a matter of principle, UEC and Okada Manila are business entities that have grown over the past 50 years under my vision and leadership, with the cooperation of various people. This is the unquestionable truth, no matter who you ask Kazuo Okada

Wynn Resorts recorded $908.8m in revenue for Q2, over $80m down from the previous year. Meanwhile, the Wynn Palace in Macau suffered a 78% drop in operating revenue alone, as Wynn Macau saw a 68% drop – with both showing EBITDA losses of $50m and 40.4m, respectively.

Wynn Resorts CEO Craig Billings stated after the Q2 report dropped: “In Macau, while Covid-related travel restrictions continued to impact our results, we remain confident that the market will benefit from the return of visitation over time.”

Macau Legend Development division disposes of HK$200m in bonds

A key division of Macau Legend Development, Macau Fisherman’s Wharf International Investment Limited (MFW), has sold over HK$200m (US$25m) worth of bonds to generate capital, amid the financial uncertainty caused by the covid restrictions in Macau.

The casino operator recently let staff go to help streamline the business, as the squeeze of lockdown pressure begins to bite harder. The sale of the bonds is another sign that MFW is struggling.

It is also not known which person or organisation bought the bonds on the open market, with MFW saying: “To the best knowledge, information and belief of the directors and having made all reasonable enquiries, none of the connected persons of the company nor the associates have purchased the bonds which were disposed of by MFW under the disposal”.

SJM Resorts to increase share capital to qualify for new gaming concession

SJM Holdings has announced it is going to increase its share capital from $37m to $618.4m, to meet the qualification requirements to apply for Macau’s new gaming concession. The recently passed law amendment stipulates that any local casino concessionaire share capital should be a minimum MOP$5bn (US$618.4m).

The money will be raised by increasing the portion of the type B shares from 10% to 15% – a plan that will be voted on by SJM Holdings’ stockholders in an extraordinary meeting in Hong Kong later this month.

The deadline to apply for a new a gaming concession under the newly open public tender is 14 September.

Elsewhere, the results of Gambling Insider’s poll asking the question on the back of yesterday’s in-depth piece, ‘is now a good time to invest in Macau?’ have returned a resounding no – which landed 67% of the vote. 

Missed a big gambling industry story in Asia? Don't worry, Gambling Insider has you covered with our Asia round-up. 

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