Operating since 1979, Universal Entertainment is mainly involved in the planning, development, manufacturing, and sales of pachinko and pachislot machines in Japan. In the early 2000s, Universal’s founder, Kazuo Okada, became a partner with Steve Wynn in the creation of Wynn Resorts. In 2016, Universal independently developed and opened the Okada Manila IR in the Philippines. In 2017, however, Kazuo Okada was accused of various crimes and replaced by Jun Fujimoto at the helm of the company.
While Universal possesses experience developing a major casino resort project, it is unclear what its intentions are in regard to the Japan IR market.
Family Name: Fujimoto
Given Name: Jun
Role: President & CEO
Profile: Having held senior executive posts since 2004, Fujimoto became President in 2011 and assumed control as CEO in 2017, after playing a key role in ousting company founder Kazuo Okada.
Family Name: Oya
Given Name: Takashi
Role: President of Okada Manila
Profile: Prior to his promotion to the post of president of Asiabest Group International and Okada Manila in March 2019, Oya had held senior positions at the Fields Research Institute from 2007 to 2018, and was a director of Deutsche Securities from 1999 to 2007.
Family Name: Okada
Given Name: Kazuo
Role: Founder and Former Chairman
Profile: Okada rose to prominence as a manufacturer of slot machines and pachislot. In the early 2000s he worked together with Steve Wynn to establish Wynn Resorts, but later moved on to focus on his own casino project in the Philippines, Okada Manila. Not long after the doors opened on that crowning achievement, Okada was accused of misappropriating company funds and was dislodged from his position in the company that he founded.
Family Name: Sugiyama
Given Name: Kenji
Role: Former President of Okada Manila
Profile: With a background in security issues within the hospitality industry joined Tiger Resort in 2012 and worked his way up to the position of president of Okada Manila. He resigned from that position in March 2019.
Family Name: Usui
Given Name: Takahiro
Role: Former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Aruze Gaming America
Profile: Usui joined Aruze Gaming in 2005 and ultimately rose to become its chairman and chief executive officer. He also served and president and chief operating officer of Okada Manila in 2016-2017, but when Universal Entertainment launched fraud allegations against Kazuo Okada in 2017, Usui was accused of being his co-conspirator. He thus lost his position in the Philippines, but remained in charge of Aruze Gaming from its Las Vegas base. However, in June 2019, he resigned from his US positions as well.
Okada Manila’s EBITDA margin appears to be improving on operational changes, table pricing and an improvement in non-gaming amenities, Union Gaming wrote in a note.
Okada Manila saw gross gaming revenue (GGR) rise 29.5% in September, with strong gains from both the VIP and mass market segment.
Universal Entertainment has announced that Okada Manila saw a substantial rise in gross gaming revenue in August 2019, driven by a boost in its VIP business.
Universal Entertainment said Okada Manila is opening more hotel rooms to accommodate visitors as its July revenue spiked 48% from the prior year.
Universal Entertainment saw its net sales increase 12.9% to 52.5 billion yen (about US$495 million) in the first half of 2019, boosted mainly by growth across all segments at Okada Manila.
Japan’s Universal Entertainment announced it has introduced two major innovations for slot machines, including a multi-currency option, with both being deployed at its Okada Manila property in the Philippines.
Courts in Japan and the Philippines have rejected legal appeals from billionaire Kazuo Okada, who is seeking to regain control over his former gaming empire.
Okada Manila saw a 26% year-on-year increase in gross gaming revenue for the month of June, reaching 3 billion pisos (about US$60 million).
Philippines IR Okada Manila saw gross gaming revenue fall 6.7% year-on-year in May, due mainly to a sharp fall in VIP table game revenue.
Embattled gaming mogul Kazuo Okada has fired back against officials of Tiger Resort Leisure and Entertainment Inc., accusing them of conspiring to remove him from his own company, local media reports.
Kazuo Okada has vowed to make use of all legal options to fight an arrest warrant laid against himself and the former president of Okada Manila, Takahiro Usui, in relation to fraud allegations, local media reports.
Tiger Resort, Leisure & Entertainment, the company that operates Okada Manila, said the integrated resort generated a 26% gain in gross gaming revenue in April.
Universal Entertainment’s flagship integrated resort business, Okada Manila, reported a narrowed operating loss of 6.2 billion yen (about US$56 million) in 2018, helped by higher net sales, and “extremely high” occupancy rate during the year.
Tiger Resort Leisure & Entertainment, the operating firm for Okada Manila, reported a 68% increase in gross gaming revenue (GGR) for the month of March 2019, mainly due to a recovery in domestic and international players following Chinese New Year.
Takashi Oya has replaced Kenji Sugiyama as both president of Asiabest Group International, the corporate entity used by Universal Entertainment to create a backdoor listing to the Philippine Stock Exchange, as well as the Okada Manila IR.
Japanese gaming tycoon Kazuo Okada announced on Friday he has been released from bail by Hong Kong’s Independent Commission Against Corruption, thus resolving one of his pending legal difficulties.
The business alliance between Universal Entertainment and Capcom to jointly develop pachislot machines has been described by an industry analyst to AGB Nippon as “a powerful collaboration.”
Tiger Resort Leisure and Entertainment, the operating company for Okada Manila, posted record GGR and adjusted EBITDA in January.
Casino magnate Kazuo Okada is on the verge of losing his bitter battle to regain control of the gaming business that he founded after a series of legal and business events have swung against him.
Universal Entertainment has announced that it will be working with Chinese state-owned travel agency to develop package tours to its Philippines-based resort, Okada Manila.
Japanese billionaire Kazuo Okada has asked the Philippine Stock Exchange to block a planned backdoor listing of Tiger Resort Asia, which owns and operates the US$2.4 billion Okada Manila.
Universal Entertainment has reported to the JASDAQ Securities Exchange a month-to-month 13% decline in gaming revenue from its unit Tiger Resort Leisure & Entertainment, the operating firm for Okada Manila.
Universal Entertainment assured shareholders on Monday that the arrest warrant for Universal Entertainment founder Kazuo Okada will not affect its Philippines gaming operations.
A court in Parañaque, the Philippines, has issued an arrest warrant for Universal Entertainment founder Kazuo Okada in connection with charges that he embezzled more than US$3 million from his own company.
Tiger Resorts & Leisure has been ordered to re-submit its tender offer to minority shareholders in Asiabest Group to disclose factual information about civil and criminal proceedings involving its directors in Hong Kong.
Universal Entertainment has released a revised business results forecast for the calendar year 2018 which is sharply lower than what it had projected in May.
Universal Entertainment released financial figures showing that casino revenues at Okada Manila reached a record-high 2.9 billion pisos (US$55.1 million) in November, combined with a record-high EBITDA of almost 528 million pisos (US$10 million) during the same period.
Fitch Ratings assigned Universal Entertainment Corporation a “Long-Term Foreign-Currency Issuer Default Rating of 'B+' with a Stable Outlook” after providing a modestly optimistic assessment of the firm, especially its Okada Manila IR in the Philippines.
Tomohiro Okada, the son of casino mogul Kazuo Okada, has admitted that he had played a part in the removal of his father from their family-owned company based on suspicion of impropriety, rather than any concrete evidence.
Apparently as part of its policy of enhanced information disclosure as promised in a statement to the JASDAQ securities exchange last month, Universal Entertainment has publicly released a monthly report on its casino business—in other words, regarding Okada Manila in the Philippines.
Japanese gaming conglomerate Universal Entertainment reported net income of 168 billion yen (about US$1.5 billion) and net sales of 67 billion yen (about US$593 million) for the first nine months of 2018.
Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte said that he wants to suppress online gambling, which has become a magnet for kidnapping and extortion.
In a statement to the JASDAQ securities exchange on Tuesday, Universal Entertainment vowed to provide necessary information on the company’s financial condition and its business outcomes in a more appropriate manner so as to help investors make judgments on their investments.
Universal Entertainment Corporation says it will be spending up to 2 billion yen (about US$17.8 million) to acquire the company’s common stock and converting it to Treasury stock.
Sega Sammy Holdings released its 150-page “Integrated Report 2018” this week in which, among other things, the company proclaims its intention to be “on an equal footing with world-famous IR operators” both domestically and internationally.
Okada Manila President Kenji Sugiyama and Vice-Chairman Antonio Cojuangco spoke at the Tourism Expo Japan 2018 to promote increased Japanese visits to their IR in the Philippines and also to discuss general lessons from their experience for the future of the Japanese IR market.
Philippines-based Tiger Resort Leisure and Entertainment, operator of Okada Manila and a unit of the Universal Entertainment Corporation, will open an office in Tokyo with the aim of entering the domestic IR race.
Universal Entertainment’s Philippine unit, the operator of the Okada Manila, is planning a backdoor listing through the takeover of Manila-traded Asiabest Group (ABG).
Gaming mogul Kazuo Okada has fired back at the allegations made against him by Universal Entertainment Corporation, calling the allegations “false and malicious” and part of “the latest attempt by UEC to harm [his] reputation.”
Universal Entertainment has reported 172.5 billion yen (about US$1.6 billion) in profit for the January-June period of 2018. Universal had reported financial losses in the same period of the previous year.
Japanese gaming mogul Kazuo Okada and an associate has been arrested by Hong Kong’s anti-corruption watchdog, according to a filing from Universal Entertainment Corporation.
Universal Entertainment, the company behind Okada Manila, is planning an intra-group “organizational realignment” aimed at protecting its businesses from “unsuitable individuals.”
Japanese gaming mogul Kazuo Okada is not completely clear of the US$10 million fraud charges filed against him, which is still subject to review from the Department of Justice
Universal Entertainment Corporation, the parent company behind the Okada Manila IR in the Philippines, is looking to acquire licenses in the United States for the manufacture of equipment and devices used in its casino operations, according to a company statement.
Philippine prosecutors in Parañaque and Makati cities have dropped all charges filed against Japanese gaming billionaire Kazuo Okada.
Universal Entertainment said it plans to seek a stock market listing for the company that controls its Okada Manila property within the next two years as it positions for further growth.