Las Vegas Sands is an intergrated resort developer and operator. Its resorts feature luxury accommodations, state-of-the-art gaming, high-end retail, celebrity-chef dining and a wide-range of entertainment and convention space for both business and leisure guests.It runs integrated Resorts in Las Vegas, Bethlehem, Macau and Singapore, with 10 resorts worldwide and three of the world’s largest convention centers. It has a unique convention-based marketing strategy which allows the company to attract business travelers during the slower mid-week periods while focusing on leisure travelers during peak visitation. Its convention, trade show and meeting facilities are located with all on-site amenities offered at our resorts. Its integrated Resorts in the United States include The Venetian and The Palazzo. The resorts offer not only luxury accommodations and entertainment but when combined with Sands Expo & Convention Center, The Venetian and The Palazzo also make up one of the largest LEED certified buildings on the planet. Also in the United States is Sands Bethlehem, a AAA 4-diamond and 4 Green Key property, located on the site of the historic Bethlehem Steel Works.In Asia, the company runs the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore. It has also developed – through its majority-owned subsidiary Sands China Ltd. – a collection of resorts in Macau, including The Venetian Macau, Sands Macau, The Plaza Macau featuring Four Seasons Hotel Macau, Cotai Central, Sands Cotai Central, The St. Regis Macau, Cotai Central, as well as its most recent edition, The Parisian Macau.
George Tanasijevich has been the president and chief executive officer of Marina Bay Sands Pte. Ltd., a subsidiary of Las Vegas Sands Corp. since January 2011 and July 2011 respectively.Tanasijevich has also been the managing director of global development at Las Vegas Sands Corp. since January 2011. Tanasijevich previously served as senior vice president / Equity Markets at CapitaLand Limited in Singapore, Southeast Asia’s largest real estate conglomerate. Prior to joining CapitaLand, Mr. Tanasijevich served as corporate vice president of General Growth Properties, which was at that time the second largest shopping mall REIT in the United States. Tanasijevich has an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, a law degree from Loyola University of Chicago, where he was a member of the law review, and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan.
Mr. Sheldon G. Adelson is an internationally renowned businessman, entrepreneur, and philanthropist. His business career spans nearly seven decades and has included creating and developing to maturity more than 50 different companies, including the COMDEX tradeshow for the computer industry. At his direction, COMDEX became the world’s largest TRADE show with a presence in many different countries.Mr. Adelson is also the founder of Las Vegas Sands Corp. - a company which has become the leading global developer of integrated resorts, which feature premium accommodations, world-class gaming and entertainment, convention and exhibition facilities, celebrity chef restaurants, and many other amenities.As the company’s chairman and chief executive officer, Mr. Adelson’s penchant for challenging and changing the status quo has led the company to overwhelming success in every location in which it operates.In Las Vegas he is widely credited for helping transform the city from a gaming-centric regional location into the leading convention and exhibition city in the United States. In Macao, Mr. Adelson’s vision to recreate the Las Vegas Strip was originally panned by most observers, but since opening The Venetian Macao on the Cotai Strip in 2007, his development plans have become the envy of international leisure and hospitality operators everywhere.In 2010, Mr. Adelson set the bar even higher with the opening of the $6 billion Marina Bay Sands integrated resort in Singapore. In addition to all the amenities that have become the hallmarks of Las Vegas Sands-developed properties, this iconic facility features a three-acre SkyPark which sits more than 50-stories off the ground and on top of the property’s three hotel towers.Having been featured on the cover of more than 50 different publications, Mr. Adelson has been profiled by many of the world’s leading print and broadcast news organizations.He has earned multiple honorary degrees and has been a guest lecturer at various colleges and universities, including the University of New Haven, Harvard Business School, Columbia Business School, Tel Aviv University and Babson College.Among his numerous awards for his business and philanthropic work are the Armed Forces Foundation’s Patriot Award, Hotel Investment Conference’s Innovation Award, the Woodrow Wilson Award for Corporate Citizenship and induction into the American Gaming Association’s Hall of Fame.Mr. Adelson and his wife, Dr. Miriam Adelson, are noted philanthropists who donate to a variety of civic and charitable causes.
Sands China invited two local organisations to conduct responsible gaming training sessions for Responsible Gaming Ambassadors from Sands China’s table games department at the Venetian.
Las Vegas Sands' experience in resort management and MICE activities in the U.S. meant that any party partnering with the operator had a higher chance than others in winning one of Macau's original licenses, a court heard.
A long-delayed court case between a Taiwanese business man and Las Vegas Sands kicked off in Macau on Wednesday, with the plaintiff seeking as much as $12 billion in damages from the operator.
A Macau court will begin a hearing on June 16th brought by a former partner of Las Vegas Sands, who is claiming 70 percent of Sands China’s profit from 2004 to 2022.
Macau and Singapore should see the same type of pent-up demand currently being observed in the U.S. casino market when international travel is allowed to resume, according to Las Vegas Sands executives.
After a process that has gone on for more than half a decade, the shape of the Japan IR consortiums is finally beginning to emerge.
A bill to legalize integrated resorts and sports betting in Texas appears to have languished at the committee stage and has not met the deadline for passage by the State Affairs Committee.
Macau will lead the recovery in Asia this year, while Singapore needs international flights to resume to gain further impetus, executives from Las Vegas Sands told investors on the company’s earnings call.
Las Vegas Sands has launched a multi-million dollar advertising campaign in an effort to convince lawmakers to legalise casinos in Texas.
Moody’s Investors Service has completed a periodic review of Macau’s three U.S. operators, commenting that liquidity is relatively good and their long-term prospects are credit solid despite the hit from Covid.
Five Sands China departments have received ISO 45001:2018 certification for their occupational health and safety (OHS) management systems, a testament to the company’s success in proactively creating a safe working environment.
Las Vegas Sands has set up a special committee to review AML controls at its Marina Bay Sands casino in Singapore and has hired U.S. law firm Vinson & Elkins LLP to assist.
Las Vegas Sands Chairman and CEO Rob Goldstein said the company "firmly believes" the Macau market will recover and will benefit in the future from infrastructure developments throughout the Greater Bay Area.
Las Vegas Sands' sale of its Nevada properties for $6.25 billion has elicited differing reactions from global credit ratings agencies.
Las Vegas Sands' sale of its Nevada properties for $6.25 billion is a "slight credit negative," Fitch Ratings said in a note.
The sale of Las Vegas Sands’ Vegas properties for $6.25 billion could be an opportunity for Sands to put their boots down in Australia through a purchase of Crown Resorts, according to Bernstein analyst Vitaly Umansky.
Las Vegas Sands has sold its properties in Las Vegas, including The Venetian and the Sands Expo and Convention Centre for US$6.25 billion to the Apollo Global Management and VICI Properties.
Wynn Resorts said it has again featured in Fortune magazine's most admired companies list, appearing in the top five in the hotels, casinos and resorts category.
The Singapore market continues to show resilience during the pandemic, Bernstein Research noted in commentary on Las Vegas Sands' Q4 results.
Las Vegas Sands has kicked off the Q4 season reporting both its results for the last three months of 2020 as well as its full year figures.
Robert Goldstein has become Chairman and Chief Executive Officer; and Patrick Dumont has been named President and Chief Operating Officer in the wake of the death of Sheldon Adelson. These were the expected promotions, but still signal a major change in the company’s leadership.
Las Vegas Sands management transition has been well anticipated and well planned and the company's executives are well positioned to maintain the broad strategy that has been in place, analysts at Bernstein said.
Sheldon Adelson, whose vision for gaming in Asia helped reshape the skylines of both Macau and Singapore, has died at age 87 following complications for the treatment of non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.
Las Vegas Sands said its founder and CEO, Sheldon Adelson, has died at 87 following complications related to his treatment for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.
Las Vegas Sands is in talks with potential partners to enter sports betting in what would be a major shift in strategy for the company, which has previously rejected online gambling.
Las Vegas Sands has revealed that Chairman Sheldon Adelson has taken medical leave, though analysts say his departure is not a concern in terms of changes in strategy at the casino operator.
Las Vegas Sands Chief Operating Officer Rob Goldstein has been named as acting chairman and CEO of the group as Sheldon Adelson has taken medical leave from Jan 7 to resume treatment for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.
Sands China said its new London-themed property, The Londoner, will begin opening from Q1 next year with an official ceremony to be held in early February.
HSBC has downgraded its Buy rating on Las Vegas Sands to a Hold and says it prefers Melco Resorts & Entertainment due to its position as a first cross-border destination and its positioning in premium mass.
While Las Vegas Sands appears prepared to turn its back on the city that bears its name in favour of its Asian resorts, MGM Growth Properties says it still sees significant value in the Strip.
MGM Growth Properties says it would be willing to buy a Las Vegas Strip casino, such as the Venetian, if the company can find the right partners to operate it. Las Vegas Sands last month confirmed it is seeking buyers for its U.S. properties.
The Macau government is predicting gambling revenues of MOP130 billion for 2021, generating some MOP45.5 billion in taxes, according to TDM Macau. The government said the economy would continue to be in a critical condition.
This week Las Vegas Sands shocked the gaming world by confirming a report that the company was exploring the possibility of pulling out of its home in Las Vegas and becoming an entirely Asia-focused enterprise.
Bank of America has expressed doubts about Las Vegas Sands' ability to offload its casino assets given a dearth of potential buyers due to the pandemic. The bank says there is a very small pool of buyers able to make a $6 billion acquisition and at the moment access to capital market finance is also less favourable.
Macau, which last year was given a strong bill of health when it comes to efforts to combat money laundering and financial crimes, has taken further action by signing an AML risk assessment accord with a unit of the World Bank.
Las Vegas Sands lobbed an “October surprise” into the world of the gaming industry, confirming it’s seeking buyers for its Nevada casinos, effectively leaving it as an Asia-only operator, with properties in Macau and Singapore.
Las Vegas Sands Corp is considering the sale of its Las Vegas casinos and is seeking a price tag of about $6 billion and marking an exit from the US gambling industry.
Macau's Health Bureau’s (SSM) Control of Communicable Diseases and Surveillance of Diseases Department Coordinator Leong Iek Hou says that those who have recently entered after having been in Xinjiang’s prefecture of Kashgar within the past 14 days pose a low COVID-19 risk to Macau.
Shares in Macau's casino operators all rose on Thursday following an upbeat earnings announcement from Las Vegas Sands, while stock in Suncity Holdings outpaced, surging almost 23 percent on the day.
Las Vegas Sands’ latest earnings report provided a welcome respite from negative news, beating expectations and with a positive outlook, but perhaps the real surprise was the outperformance coming from Singapore.
Las Vegas Sands put a positive spin on the future outlook as it reported another quarter of heavy losses triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Las Vegas Sands will be the first of the major operators to report its Q3 results on Wednesday, providing a snapshot of how the recovery process from the pandemic is faring in three major gaming jurisdictions.
Las Vegas Sands Chairman Sheldon Adelson and his wife Miriam Adelson became the biggest contributors to Donald Trump’s re-election effort, with $75 million in donations to a super-PAC that is spending heavily on television ads supporting the president.
Las Vegas Sands Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Sheldon Adelson chose his words carefully back in May when he announced that his firm, considered by many observers to be the frontrunner among major IR operators, had pulled out of the Japan race. But in an earnings conference call held last week, he let it rip.
Las Vegas Sands Chairman and CEO Sheldon Adelson offered a more candid explanation of why his company pulled out of the Japan IR race in May, citing “negative regulations” as the key factor. Speaking during an earnings conference call, Adelson stated, “The regulations that were promulgated by the Japanese government… were not conducive to attracting […]
Las Vegas Sands reported its financial results for the quarter ending June 30 and, as expected, they were grim, including a net loss of US$549 million at Sands China. Sands China revenues for the quarter came in at only US$40 million, which was a 98.1 percent drop from the same quarter in 2019. Marina Bay […]
Macau’s six operators are likely to post the worst quarterly performance ever in Q2, with the focus likely to be on who has done the most to control operating expenditures during the period, Morgan Stanley reports in a note.
Nine listed gaming operators in the Asia Pacific region are likely to see a plunge of about 70 percent in EBITDA this year, but all should have sufficient cash to cover basic needs for the next year, Moody’s Investors Service said.
Sands China is organizing a flight to repatriate some 130 Filipino workers stranded in Macau due to the Covid-19 pandemic, according to local media reports.
In an earnings conference call in April 2019, Las Vegas Sands President and Chief Operating Officer Robert Goldstein declared, “Our commitment to Japan is immense. It will be lots and lots of rooms—many, many rooms. There will be lots of retail. There will be lots of MICE, far beyond what people understand we're thinking about for Japan… We are deep into it. We're committed to it. We have a team on the ground there.
Las Vegas Sands unexpectedly announced today that it would be giving up its bid to build a major urban IR, thus removing a contender that many analysts predicted would become one of the main winners in the contest. “My fondness for the Japanese culture and admiration for the country’s strength as a tourism destination goes […]
Macau casino operator Sands China on Tuesday announced it has entered into a procurement deal with its parent company, LVS Group. Under the agreement, Sands China will act as an agent to procure and provide equipment and supplies from the Asia Pacific to the LVS Group. The will be achieved by Sands China buying equipment […]
Las Vegas Sands executives told an earnings conference call on Wednesday that they expected Asia, and in particular Macau, to lead the post-Covid-19 recovery of the global IR industry. President and COO Robert Goldstein noted, “We do believe there’ll be some opening in May perhaps or June… It won’t be one flick of the switch […]
Casino shares in the U.S. surged on Thursday on the expectation the U.S. government will provide assistance to the sector as part of its economic stimulus efforts.
Moody’s has placed the ratings of Las Vegas Sands on review for a downgrade given the steep drop in gaming revenue at its Macau and Singapore operations as a result of the coronavirus.
Singapore’s government has granted tax breaks and other incentives to the industry to help offset the impact of the Covid-19 virus on travel, though has chosen not to reduce its entry levy for locals.
Amidst the current concerns over the impact of the Wuhan Coronavirus, Las Vegas Sands reports that its results in the final quarter of 2019 (and at the beginning of January) had been going strong. Total revenues in the quarter were over US$3.5 billion, which was up 1 percent year-on-year, and Property EBITDA came in at […]
Las Vegas Sands and its Sands China unit are likely to dominate the market in Singapore and Macau for the next five years, according to a report from Bernstein.
Las Vegas Sands executives told an earnings conference call that they are focusing attention on their Yokohama bid, which they envision will involve an investment of $10-12 billion.
Las Vegas Sands has $5 billion in development projects in the pipeline in Asia over the next few years, Chairman and CEO Sheldon Adelson said.
Sands China's The Venetian Macau has picked up the “Property of the Year” award at the Global Gaming Awards in Las Vegas.
The Macau Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) held an explanatory session for Sands China staff on the entry ban for casino workers.
A former Chinese gambler at Marina Bay Sands is suing the casino for allegedly transferring funds from his casino deposit accounts without his authorization, Bloomberg reports. Wang Xi discovered in July that S$9.1 million (US$6.6 million) was missing from his account as a result of 22 transfers made between October and December 2015. Wang said […]
Fines paid by Singapore’s two casino operators amounted to $$745,000 ($540,000) in the 2018 financial year, with the lion’s share extracted from Genting Singapore’s Resorts World Sentosa.
Las Vegas Sands has been recognised by the S&P Dow Jones Indices for its performance in environmental, social and governance (ESG) efforts, the only IR company to make it into the index in North America.
Casino operator Las Vegas Sands Corp on Wednesday announced it has secured a new delayed draw term loan facility in aggregate principal amount of up to S$3.75 billion (US$2.7 billion). According to an SEC filing, the loan will be used to finance project costs associated with the expansion project for Marina Bay Sands pursuant to […]
The official announcement by Mayor Fumiko Hayashi that Yokohama would enter the IR race in earnest has set off a scramble among major IR operators, with Las Vegas Sands announcing that it was completely abandoning its efforts to partner with the Osaka government and Melco announcing its intention to open a Yokohama office with a new executive in charge.
Las Vegas Sands is likely to begin gaining share in the premium mass market in the second half of this year and into next as new suites for its Londoner resort and Four Seasons hotel come on line, analysts at Bain Capital wrote in a note.
Las Vegas Sands’ Managing Director for Global Development George Tanasijevich has offered the clearest statement yet that his firm is now following MGM Resorts in pursuing an “Osaka First” strategy.
The $1.3 billion sale of Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem to the Poarch Band of Creek Indians of Alabama is one its final stretch after receiving the final go-ahead from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, local media reports. Approval from the state regulator is seen as the final piece of the puzzle, and would see the […]
Las Vegas Sands president and COO Rob Goldstein said he believes Osaka to be the only city in Japan suitable for a large-scale IR with “millions” of square feet of convention space, and “thousands” of hotel rooms. Mr. Goldstein was speaking with analysts from Bernstein during a fireside chat at Bernstein’s 2019 Strategic Decision Conference. […]
Macau casino operator Sands China will remain as the mass market and non-gaming leader in Macau for at least the next five years, according to a note from Bernstein on Monday. The company upscaling and expansion of Sands’ Macau properties provide a near-term catalyst for growth, profitability and cash flows. For some time now, analysts […]
Las Vegas Sands may have paid $96 million to settle a long-running legal case with Hong Kong businessman Richard Suen over his services to the company in Macau, the Las Vegas Review Journal reports.
Las Vegas Sands President and Chief Operating Officer Robert Goldstein spoke enthusiastically about his companies prospects and plans in Japan on an investor call on Wednesday.
Record mass table revenues helped to boost total net revenue for Sands China, increasing 8 percent year-on-year to $2.3 billion in the first quarter of 2019. “We (LVS) are pleased to have delivered strong financial results in the quarter, led by consistent growth in the mass and non-gaming segments in Macao,” commented Sheldon Adelson, chairman, […]
Singapore has allowed the first major expansion of its integrated resort industry since its two IRs began operating, involving S$9 billion ($6.65 billion) new investment in non-gaming amenities, but casino entry fees and taxes will also rise. In a statement on Wednesday, the Ministry of Trade and Industry and the Ministry of Finance said the […]
Systemic shifts in the long-term relationship between China and the U.S. are underway, with the two economic superpowers charting an increasingly divergent path, and the change in course may have major implications for Macau’s operators, according to a leading risk consultancy.
Two major US operators, Las Vegas Sands and MGM Resorts, delivered press releases hailing the passage of the IR Implementation Act shortly after it occurred on Friday night. George Tanasijevich, Las Vegas Sands’ managing director of global development, said: “Las Vegas Sands would like to extend our congratulations to the people of Japan for the […]
Any trade war between the US and China could have implications for Macau casino companies, which, according to Steve Vickers and Associates (SVA), sit on the “geopolitical fault line.” “US patience towards China’s mercantilism – exemplified by the provision of cheap credit and subsidies to exporters, the systematic appropriation of intellectual property, and a failure […]
Macau’s casino operators saw their stocks tumble on Monday after weaker-than-expected Macau gaming revenue reported for the month of June. June GGR came in 12.5 percent year-on-year growth, down from the 18-20 percent expected by analysts. Shares of Melco Resorts was one of the hardest hit, falling 9.6 percent to their lowest level in 2018. […]
Las Vegas Sands quietly became the fifth international IR operator to throw its weight behind Osaka’s bid to become the host of the 2025 World Expo at the city’s Yumeshima location. Sands made this move in March, but it did so without drawing any press attention to its campaign. Contacted by Asia Gaming Brief, George […]
Marina Bay Sands is bringing one of the world’s top nightclub brands to Singapore next year, becoming the latest of the region’s major IRs to add clubbing to the entertainment mix in the hope of duplicating the success of Las Vegas’ vibrant night scene. The property, which is owned by Las Vegas Sands, is teaming […]
Las Vegas Sands’ Sands Cotai Central announced the official opening of its Phase 4 development adding a further 100,000 square feet of retail space including more than 25 new stores.
The evening tabloid Nikkan Gendai, a stalwart of train station kiosks with a daily circulation said to be in excess of 1.6 million, spelled out in a recent article the conspiracy theory regarding US President Donald Trump and the establishment of IRs in Japan that seems to have exercised a degree of influence over the national political debate.
Shares in Macau’s gaming operators have surged 82 percent since the fourth quarter of 2016 and as a result most are overvalued, with investors failing to factor in potential risks from a cyclical economic downturn and license renewals, Morningstar warns. The firm says that Galaxy Entertainment, Wynn Macau and its parent company Wynn Resorts, Melco […]
Las Vegas Sands say it agreed to sell its Sands Bethlehem property in Pennsylvania to Wind Creek Hospitality for $1.3 billion. Wind Creek is an affiliate of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians of Alabama. “Sands Bethlehem has become one of the leading regional entertainment and gaming destinations in the United States and we are […]
Sheldon Adelson featured in 21st position in Forbes annual ranking of the world’s billionaires, coming far ahead of other casino moguls. Adelson, founder and CEO of Las Vegas Sands, had a fortune of $38.5 billion as of March 6th. Forbes notes Adelson is the son of immigrants from Lithuania and Wales and grew up sleeping […]
George Tanasijevich, managing director of global development at Las Vegas Sands, recently presented a survey in central Tokyo, which for the first time, indicated that a majority of the Japanese public supports the establishment of IRs in their nation—at least when the question is asked in a particularly leading manner. The survey, conducted by the […]
Sands China’s Q4 results beat analysts’ expectations, driven by strong premium mass revenue in Macau. Total net revenues for Sands China increased 12.9 percent to US$2.10 billion compared to US$1.86 billion in the fourth quarter of 2016 and above The Street estimate for $1.94 billion. Net income increased 49.1 percent to US$519 million, while hold-normalized […]
The strong VIP growth observed in 2017 would have left Las Vegas Sands Corp. in the dust if it weren’t for the opening of The Parisian, said writers for Motley Fool on Sunday. “Las Vegas Sands Corp. didn’t have a bad 2017 by market standards, climbing 35 percent for the year. But the company had […]
The Adelson Family Foundation on Tuesday presented a cheque for more than $1.9 million to the University of Saint Joseph to assist its recovery efforts after Typhoon Hato and subsequent storms caused major damage to its new campus in August and September last year. Executives from Las Vegas Sands Corp. and Sands China Ltd. presented […]
With Osaka’s Yumeshima increasingly looking to be the big prize in the first round of anticipated IR licensing, major operators have been stepping up their campaigns to woo the local government and the business community. The latest move has been made by MGM Resorts, which became a sponsor for the Dotonbori River Festival, held this […]
Las Vegas Sands signaled its seriousness about the Japanese market this week by holding large-scale, star-studded events in Tokyo and Osaka on Wednesday and Thursday. Led by executives such as LVS President and COO Robert G. Goldstein and Marina Bay Sands President and CEO George Tanasijevich, as well as global celebrities David Beckham and Joe […]
Las Vegas Sands CEO Sheldon Adelson has criticized Japan’s planned IR legislation and warned the bill in its current form will mean a lower level of investment from his company should it win a license. On Friday afternoon, Adelson visited the Osaka Prefectural Office and held a private meeting with Osaka Governor Ichiro Matsui and […]
The Innovation Group and Global Gaming Expo (G2E) announced today six individuals to be honored as the 2017 class of Emerging Leaders of Gaming (ELG): Amy Lawrence, senior director of regulatory affairs and associate general counsel, AGS Mattias Stetz, chief operating officer, Rush Street Interactive Murali Ganesan, vice president, sales – gaming, Scientific Games Seth […]
Las Vegas Sands is expected to appear in a Macau court to defend its 2002 decision to drop its joint venture partner Asian American Entertainment Corporation (AAEC) from its Macau gaming concession bid, according to a report from Macau Daily Times. After a number of applications, appeals and counter-appeals, it has been decided that the […]
Sands China has joined the group’s volunteer effort to build 100,000 hygiene kids for Clean the World to help improve the health and wellbeing of people in need. Kits assembled Tuesday by Sands China employees and other volunteers will go to Children’s International which will deliver the 35,000 kits to families in the Philippines. Sands […]
Las Vegas Sands and MGM Resorts are among the two operators most likely to receive the urban IR concessions in Osaka and Yokohama, notes Morningstar analysts. “In our view, the companies best positioned to receive a gaming concession by year-end 2019 are those with strong track records of running world-renowned integrated resorts, especially in regions […]
Las Vegas Sands is best positioned to win a gaming license in Japan due to its strong global track record, MorningStar analyst Chelsey Tam wrote in a note. The company expects the market to generate about $25 billion in revenue, with $19 billion from gaming and the remainder from non-gaming. “Our $57 fair value estimate […]
Las Vegas Sands President and Chief Operating Officer Rob Goldstein says Macau needs more hotel rooms to fully benefit from the potential of the mass market. In a “fireside chat” with Bernstein analysts at their Strategic Decisions Conference, Goldstein said even with the opening of MGM China Holdings’ and SJM Holdings’ two new Cotai resorts […]
Lawrence Ho, chairman and CEO of Melco Resorts and Entertainment Ltd says he is more interested in building a casino in Osaka over Tokyo as the integrated resort model makes more sense there, Bloomberg reports. “When you go to the Kansai region, it’s more fun, really, and we’re a company that focuses on fun and […]
Casino operator Las Vegas Sands reported strong results in 17Q1, matching consensus expectations of $3.1 billion in revenue for the quarter. The casino operator, which owns integrated resort and casino developments in Macau, Singapore and Las Vegas, reported $578 million in net income for the quarter, an increase of 41.3 percent. Operating income increased 30.2 […]
The consensus EBITDA forecasts for 2017 for Macau’s operators now look to be achievable for this year, after targets lacked harmony with gross gaming revenue growth throughout 2016, Deutsche Bank said in an analysis. The firm said that previously, forecasts for EBITDA has failed to take account of the cost pressures stemming from the opening […]
Galaxy Entertainment has followed MGM China and Las Vegas Sands in announcing pay increases for employees this year. Eligible team members who joined on or before April 1 will receive a performance-based salary increase ranging from 2.5 percent to 5.5 percent. In addition, Galaxy announced the “Special Reward Program” in 2014 under which eligible full-time […]
Casino operator Las Vegas Sands says it will continue to look for opportunities to invest and develop an integrated resort in Vietnam. Earlier this year, the Vietnamese government made the historic decision to allow local citizens to enter select casinos in the country, reigniting interest from casino operators around the world. “We have been working […]
International casino operators have their eyes on Vietnam again after the latest gaming decree opened up casinos to locals, VietnamNetBridge reports. It is understood that Las Vegas Sands, Banyan Tree, Crown Resorts, Chow Tai Fook and Sun City are closely following developments in the country. With the new decree to take effect in March, investors […]
Las Vegas Sands subsidiary Marina Bay Sands is looking to sell 49 percent of its stake in luxury mall, the Shoppes for US$3 billion to US$3.5 billion, local media reports. The sale would mark one of the most expensive malls ever sold in the world, said LVS chairman and chief executive Sheldon Adelson in an […]
Las Vegas Sands posted a 5.6 percent year-on-year increase in net income for the fourth quarter of 2016 to $607 million. The casino operator, which owns and operates casinos in Las Vegas, Pennsylvania, Singapore and Macau, saw a combined total of $3.1 billion in revenue in the quarter, a rise of 7.4 percent year-on-year. Revenue […]
Casino operator Las Vegas Sands has agreed to pay a $7 million criminal penalty to end a U.S. Department of Justice probe into whether it violated anti-bribery laws after it paid consultant to help it obtain a license in Macau from 2006-2009, local media reports. According to a statement from the Justice Department on Thursday, […]
Casino operators have been slowly ramping back up marketing activity in China after pulling out last year in fear of further repercussions from Crown’s crackdown. In October, 18 employees of Crown were arrested for allegedly marketing its casinos and VIP rooms to Chinese nationals, prompting other casino operators to pull out their marketing teams in […]
Bloomberry Resorts Corp. has confirmed it is considering investing in a gaming business in Japan, according to its filing to the Philippine Stock Exchange. “This possible expansion in Japan is part of the Corporation’s ordinary course of business in searching for business opportunities in the Philippines and abroad,” it said. The company told the stock […]
Macau is preparing to cut the amount of cash China UnionPay card holders can withdraw from ATM machines, in a move from China to curb capital flight. According to a report from the South China Morning Post on Friday, the move to cut the daily withdrawal limit from MOP10,000 (US$1,251.9) to MOP5,000 is expected to […]
The Lower House of the Diet (House of Representatives) on Tuesday passed the long-awaited bill that would legalize casinos in Japan. According to Japanese media, the bill cleared the Lower House plenary session with the backing of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and conservative opposition Nippon Ishin no Kai. The legislation is likely to be […]
Sands China held its fourth annual 2016 Sands Supplier Excellence Awards at the Venetian Macao on Thursday, recognizing the outstanding cooperation and services of its suppliers. Held at the end of each year, the awards are a global initiative of Sands China’s parent company, Las Vegas Sands Corp. “This is Sands China’s fourth year to […]
Japanese lawmakers have reopened the debate on a bill to legalize casinos on Wednesday, with key LDP executives saying the party will try to pass the legislation by December 14, local media reports. According to Japan Times, Liberal Democratic Party Diet affairs chief Wataru Takeshita on Wednesday reportedly told junior coalition partner Komeito that the […]
Las Vegas Sands posted Q3 results that topped analysts’ forecasts as the Macau market returned to growth. Earnings for the quarter were at $0.72 per share, well above the estimated $0.60 per share and earnings from the same period last year of $0.66 per share. Revenue beat analysts’ expectations as well at $2.97 billion versus […]
Connectivity and positioning of resorts on the Cotai strip is likely to be key to the speed of the ramp up of the properties and its importance may have been underestimated, CLSA said in a recent research note. The firm noted that foot traffic was strong at Las Vegas Sands’ Parisian, which opened last month, […]
A former dealer with Marina Bay Sands in Singapore was jailed for eight months and 12 weeks for fraud, which involved misappropriating casino chips from the gaming tables. Jiang Kaiwen, 24, a Singaporean, took $118,000 worth of casino cash chips entrusted to him when he was working at MBS between March 1 and May 3 […]
Gross gambling revenue rose for a second straight month in September, gaining a greater-than-expected 7.4 percent, after two years of monthly declines. GGR was MOP18.4 billion ($2.3 billion), according to figures released by the regulator. That was a 2 percent decrease from August. Average daily revenue was MOP613 million. The month’s data also implied a […]
UBS analysts are lowering their Singapore GGR estimate by 16 to 17 percent, mainly due to weaker VIP trends. In a note on Tuesday, the brokerage said they are expecting gaming revenue to decline 12 percent this year, and expects the Singapore VIP gaming market to decline 29 percent in 2016, while mass revenue is […]
Las Vegas Sands Corp. is willing to invest between 5 to 12 trillion won ($4.5 billion to $10.8 billion) in a casino resort in Busan if “investment conditions are met”, said George Tanasijevich, CEO of Marina Bay Sands in an interview with Korea Economic Daily. “The best location for Sands Group to invest in is […]
The Nevada Supreme Court has ruled that meetings with Chinese government officials helped Las Vegas Sands secure a casino concession in Macau, TDM reports. However, the court overturned a $70 million judgement against Sands, which was brought by businessman Richard Suen, who claimed his efforts led to the operator ultimately obtaining its concession. While the […]
Fitch says it projects Sands China revenues and EBITDA to decline by 7 and 10 percent respectively in 2016, according to a note from the rating agency last Friday. Fitch says it also projects it will then rebound to approximately 2015 levels by 2017 as the Parisian ramps up and the Macau gaming market begins […]
Las Vegas Sands is reportedly “making a push again” to set up a resort in Busan, according to a report from The Korea Economic Daily last week. According to the Korean news outlet, key members of the Sands Group visited Busan’s North Port last Wednesday, to ”look around the land for establishment of the entertainment […]
Galaxy has called Sands China boss Sheldon Adelson “impolite” and “unprofessional” following his comments suggesting that Galaxy Phase 2 and Studio City were not as good as the Parisian, Macau Business Daily reports. Sheldon Adelson made the comments during Bernstein’s 2016 Strategic Decisions Conference last week, saying that the failure of the two properties to […]
Las Vegas Sands says it is looking to add another 1,000-1,200 rooms in a new tower at its Marina Bay Sands resort in Singapore, along with an entertainment arena. “The government wants more quality entertainment,” said Adelson during the Bernstein Thirty Second Annual Strategic Decisions Conference 2016. According to the Sands chairman, the Singapore government […]
Macau operator Sands China and parent company Las Vegas Sands Corp have settled a lawsuit filed by a former chief executive. Steve Jacobs, who headed Sands’ Macau operations from 2009 to 2010 filed a lawsuit after he was wrongfully terminated by Las Vegas Sands in 2010. Jacobs contended he was wrongfully terminated by Las Vegas […]
Whilst Macau’s operators have employed cost mitigation and labor shifts, any further cost cutting will prove challenging given new supply and flattish revenue, said Deutsche Bank in a research report. According to the brokerage, the key to the Macau market will shift to how new supply is absorbed from an EBITDA perspective. “At present, we […]
A second casino in Korea permitting the entry of locals will “destroy the country”, an international gaming expert warns. In an interview with Korea Herald during G2E Asia in Macau last week, David Jung, Chairman of Hero Poker said allowing a casino to open within urban areas in Korea is a “dangerous idea”. “If they […]
The final winners in the Asia Gaming Awards were announced last night at a stunning Gala Dinner and Award Ceremony held at The Venetian Macao. The Asia Gaming Awards, hosted by Asia Gaming Brief in association with G2E Asia and The Innovation Group, recognized the best of the best in ten Award categories spanning the […]
Las Vegas Sands Corp. has agreed to pay a $2 million fine to settle allegations involving accounting violations in China and AML failures in Las Vegas, local media reports. The fine was announced by the Nevada Gaming Control Board on Wednesday. According to the regulator, Sands did not admit or deny any of the allegations […]
Las Vegas Sands Corp’s Marina Bay Sands resorts has had its casino license renewed for the next three years, local media reports. The renewal will take effect from Tuesday, April 26. In February, Genting Singapore had its license renewed for three years. Earlier this year, Forbes reported the Las Vegas Sands’ Singapore operation will see […]
Las Vegas Sands Corp. chairman and CEO says he’s considering selling Marina Bay Sands’ retail assets after a government-imposed moratorium expires next year, Bloomberg reports. Sheldon Adelson in a conference call after LVS announced its first quarter results said the company had been speaking with potential buyers about the retail assets. “We have been approached. […]
Macau casino operator Sands China Ltd reported 16Q1 profit fell 9.6 percent year on year, the result of a challenging operating environment in Macau. The results, which were below analyst expectations, saw total net revenue for Sands China down 7.9 percent to $1.6 billion in the first quarter of 2016, compared to $1.8 billion the […]
Casino operator Las Vegas Sands Corp has announced its former president Michael Leven has retired from the company’s board of directors, according to a SEC filing on Tuesday. Leven also plans to exit the board of its Macau subsidiary, Sands China, with both departures effective immediately. Leven was named president in 2009 in one of […]
Casino operator Las Vegas Sands Corp. has agreed to pay $9 million to settle SEC allegations that it violated anti-bribery law, local media reports. The allegations revolved around the company’s sponsorship of a Chinese basketball team, plans for a business center in Beijing and a ferry deal in Macau and failing to properly document transactions […]
Macau’s Court of First Appeal has ruled that a former business partner of Las Vegas Sands Corp. can proceed with its lawsuit seeking billions in compensation for breaking the terms of their former partnership agreement, Reuters reports. According to a filing on March 16, the Court of First Appeal (TJB) denied Las Vegas Sands’ motion […]
Casino operator Las Vegas Sands has announced the appointment of Patrick Dumont as its chief financial officer, according to an announcement from the company. Las Vegas Sands chairman and chief executive officer Sheldon Adelson, who is also Dumont’s father-in-law, said the appointment was the formalization of a role Dumont had already been performing. “Patrick has […]
Las Vegas Sands Corp. says it will push its plan to build its proposed $10 billion casino resort in South Korea, according to an interview with George Tanasijevich, managing director of Global Development for Las Vegas Sands Corp. Tanasijevich, who is also the CEO of Marina Bay Sands spoke with Korea Times in an interview, […]
Casino operator Las Vegas Sands Corp. has once again persuaded the Nevada Supreme Court to throw out a jury award won by Richard Suen, in relation to claims that he helped Sands secure its license in Macau, local media reports. On Friday, the state court said there was not enough evidence to justify the […]
Las Vegas Sands president and chief operating officer Robert Goldstein believes room rates may fall when several new properties come on line in Macau this year, local media reports. Goldstein, who was quoted at the JP Morgan Gaming, Lodging, Restaurant and Leisure Management Access Forum in Las Vegas last week, said properties to be opened […]
District Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez will continue hearing Steven Jacobs’ case against Las Vegas Sands, as the casino firm failed to provide “new grounds to remove” Gonzalez from the case, local media reports. Chief Clark County District Judge David Barker made the ruling last week after investigating claims the Gonzalez was bias in Jacobs’ lawsuit. “This […]
A former Sands executive is asking a federal court in Nevada to rule on the continuing legal battle over his 2010 dismissal as head of operations of the Macau-based casino, according to local media. The lawsuit, filed on Jan. 29 in a U.S. District Court in Las Vegas seeks for unspecified damages on the question […]
U.S. District Judge James C. Mahan from the District Court of Nevada has granted First Cagayan’s motion to vacate and set aside final judgment in relation to the copyright infringement claims filed by Las Vegas Sands in 2014. It was reported in Mar. 2015 that Las Vegas Sands won an intellectual property case against […]
Casino operator Las Vegas Sands Corp is proposing a $1 billion stadium on 42 acres of land near the University of Nevada Las Vegas. The 65,000 seat stadium would be designed to house the UNLV football team, and potentially an NFL team, according to local media. Andy Abboud, LV Sands’ senior VP of government relations […]
Roberto Coppola, global director of research & consumer insights at YWS Design & Architecture will participate in the International Casino Conference, taking part in the panel: “Engaging with Millennials” on February 1st in London. With gaming industry colleagues covering the perspectives of social and land-based gaming trends, Roberto’s panel will discuss: key drivers of the […]
Wynn Macau has sent a letter to the contractor developing its $4.1 billion Wynn Palace on Cotai warning of penalty payments should construction milestones fail to be met. The opening of the resort has already been delayed by three months to June 25th from an original launch plan in March. “We are concerned that with […]
The Campaign for Accountability has retracted an allegation that accused Las Vegas Sands Chairman Sheldon Adelson of tolerating prostitution in his casinos. The group said it regrets its request and has withdrawn its submission requesting an investigation. “The allegations relied upon in making the requests are false and we apologize sincerely for any inconvenience or […]
Gross gambling revenue in the first week of November is pointing to a weak start for the month, prompting analysts to revise down their forecasts. According to Bernstein Research average daily revenue in the week through to Nov. 8th was MOP 525 million ($66 million), lower than October’s MOP 647 million rate, mainly due to […]
Las Vegas Sands 3Q earnings declined due to a 46-percent drop in profit at its Macau unit, though the figure was better than expected and Singapore proved a bright spot. Adjusted net income decreased to $529.8 million, or $0.66 per diluted share, compared to $675.7 million, or $0.84 per diluted share, in the third quarter […]
Las Vegas Sands 15Q3 results beat expectations due to continued cost cutting in Macau and a surprising upside in Singapore, but recent modest margin declines are likely to accelerate, Deutsche Bank said in a note. LVS’ adjusted net income decreased to $529.8 million, or $0.66 per diluted share, compared to $675.7 million, or $0.84 per […]
The profitability of Macau’s casino operators is expected to decline more than revenue in Q3, though results will have improved from the prior quarter due to stabilization in the higher margin mass market, UBS said in a research note. Overall EBITDA is seen falling 36 percent year-on-year in Q3, that’s up 2 percent from Q2. […]
Las Vegas Sands was the biggest loser in terms of mass market share among the U.S.-listed operators in Macau in September, according to Wells Fargo research. For the market as a whole, unadjusted mass revenue fell 33 percent year-on-year, with junket volumes down 54 percent and VIP revenue off 34 percent, the analysts said in […]
Famed attorney Alan Dershowitz has been recruited by Sands China Ltd. to argue that Nevada’s Supreme Court should dismiss a wrongful termination lawsuit filed by the company’s former CEO five years ago, the Associated Press reported. Dershowitz and Sands China lawyer Steve Morris argued the company is registered in the Cayman Islands and does business […]
Macau’s collapsing junket-driven VIP business is hastening the casino hub’s transition into a leisure-oriented destination, akin to Las Vegas, said Bloomberg Intelligence. In response to comments made by Robert Goldstein, president of Las Vegas Sands, in a 15Q2 Earnings Call, in which he said Macao is “very clearly,” a mass market, Bloomberg said Sands China […]
Wells Fargo says it remains neutral on Macau despite largely positive results from Las Vegas Sands in 15Q2, adding that once revenues stabilize, “we do not see a V-shaped recovery.” In a note analyst Cameron McKnight said it is notable that LVS drove higher share and margins in a market that’s been persistently weak, is […]
China suspects that Las Vegas Sands’ Macau casinos were being used by U.S. intelligence agents to entrap and blackmail Chinese officials, the U.K.’s Guardian newspaper reported, citing a confidential report for the gambling industry. The report was filed by a private investigator in 2010. “Many of the (Chinese) officials we contacted were of the view […]
Sands China Ltd.’s total net revenues decreased 25.6 percent to $1.77 billion in 15Q2, compared to $2.38 billion in the same period last year, its parent company Las Vegas Sands reported. In a filing to the stock exchange LVS said adjusted property EBITDA for Sands China Ltd. decreased 29.5 percent to $564.5 million in the […]
Las Vegas Sands will be the first of the six operators in Macau to report Q2 earnings on Wednesday, with analysts expecting a drop of about 28 percent in net profit from the year earlier. Earnings per share are expected to be about $0.61, down from $0.85 cents a year earlier, while revenue is seen […]
A U.S. judge said she won’t unseal confidential documents that could reveal business ties between Las Vegas Sands and Chinese triad gangs. District Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez, hearing a wrongful dismissal case involving former senior Sands China executive Steven Jacobs, said the reports contained sensitive commercial and gaming information that shouldn’t be made public, according to […]
A Clark County district judge in the U.S. has been petitioned by two organizations to unseal documents that potentially reveal business ties between Chinese triads and Las Vegas Sands, according to media reports. The motions were filed by Guardian News & Media, publisher of the British newspaper The Guardian, and the Campaign for Accountability, a […]
Sands Resorts Cotai Strip Macao announced that it has entered into a long-term strategy partnership with Lander Real Estate Co., Ltd., to co-develop sporting events both nationally and abroad. Dave Horton, global chief marketing officer of Las Vegas Sands Corp. and Sands China Ltd, said the partnership comes at a time when sport is becoming […]
Shares in Macau casino operators gained Thursday following a Credit Suisse analysis of the breakdown of May gambling revenue that pointed to “some green shoots.” The investment bank said VIP gaming rose 3 percent from April, VIP rolling gained 7 percent and mass gaming was up 9 percent. “Mass revenue was quite decent, even after […]
Las Vegas Sands CEO said at a conference in New York that the key to lifting Macau out of a slump is to build more resorts which will in turn stoke demand, according to the Business Insider. Despite 11 straight months of falling gaming revenues in Macau due to China’s push to curb graft and […]
Sheldon Adelson looks set to appear in court for the first time to answer allegations by Steven Jacobs, the former CEO of Las Vegas Sands’ Macau operations, who claims he was wrongfully dismissed. It will be the first time in the four-and-a-half-year case that Adelson will be forced to take the stand, according to a […]
Casino stocks took a hit after the government announcement that Macau will cap the number of Mainland visitors to 21 million, with Wynn faring the worst. Wynn Resorts Limited finished Tuesday’s session as the worst performer on the S&P 500 Composite index, falling 6.13 or 4.59 percent to 127.47. Wynn has been downgraded by several […]
Sands China Ltd. announced that its subsidiary VML US Finance LLC has entered into a new loan agreement with lenders for $1 billion due to be transacted at the end of this month. “The Company is pleased to announce that on April 10, 2015, (the “Borrower”), an indirect, wholly-owned subsidiary of the Company, entered into […]
A senior Vietnamese official has confirmed that he has asked local authorities to clear a site at the Van Don Economic Zone to prepare for an airport and casino-resort. It is hoped the developments will boost tourism to Quang Ninh province, which is home to the World Natural Heritage site of Halong Bay. “We haven’t […]
The Venetian Macau has scrapped a high-profile ad campaign featuring English soccer star David Beckham just two days before its launch. The Venetian Macau announced that this week’s launch event and campaign had been “postponed until further notice,” The South China Morning Post reported. The identity of the celebrity at the center of the campaign […]
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pressed a senior Japanese official last year to allow for gaming tycoon Sheldon Adelson to open a casino in the country where gambling is largely banned. Las Vegas Sands CEO Adelson in February last year announced its intention to invest $10 billion in Japan to kick-start the country’s casino industry, […]
An undercurrent of debate over the future of existing gaming concessions in Macau has begun to percolate as the contracts approach renewal in the coming few years. In a report launched by the Hong Kong-based securities and intelligence consultancy, Steve Vickers Associates, the firm says the Macau government may be considering looking to a “new” […]
Former executive director for Las Vegas Sands, Solaire Resorts builder, Tenman Project Management Holdings Limited, Matthew Pryor, has joined Best Sunshine to take the lead in its construction of the $7.1 billion casino project on Saipan. Pryor was introduced by Best Sunshine CEO Mark Brown in a press conference Sunday afternoon at their headquarters on […]
The Q4 EBITDA of Macau’s gaming operators is likely to decline about 11 percent quarter on quarter, outpacing a drop in revenue, due to the falling mass market, according to a note from Morgan Stanley. It says overall gambling revenue fell 9 percent quarter on quarter, with a 5 percent drop in VIP and 13 […]
Yokohama Mayor Fumiko Hayashi's announcement that her government would make an IR bid reshaped the licensing race in a way that few other events have done.
The Abe government's decision to drag its feet on more detailed regulations governing the IR industry and to delay the establishment of the Casino Management Board may exercise an effect on which local governments get licensed and which IR operators are selected.
Thailand’s ongoing ban on all forms of gambling is proving a gold mine for casinos elsewhere in the region, with a growing number taking steps to specifically target the Thai VIP base.
Gaming companies have long recognised the lucrative potential of teaming up with sports, and as new jurisdictions open up to casinos, operators are seeking to leverage these ties to boost brand recognition, woo the public and dull the gambling edge.
Besides being titans in the casino world, there’s something else that Sheldon Adelson, Stanley Ho, Lim Kok Thay and Steve Wynn have in common and this factor may lead to important regulatory repercussions for their business empires.
Singapore’s two integrated resorts will cast a longer reflection on the island state but new shadows cloud the horizon across the southern shoreline.
The season has come for the sixteen or seventeen interested IR operators to concretely develop their strategies to woo local governments and to position themselves to be chosen as partners.
The increased clarity regarding the terms of IR regulation in Japan following the ruling coalition compromises is also throwing light on which institutions are now advantaged and which are disadvantaged in the race for licenses. Seth Sulkin, head of the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan’s task force on IRs, describes the outcome to Asia Gaming Brief as “a major victory for the major casino operators and large Japanese cities.”
The year 2017 saw a distinct acceleration in the race to obtain licenses to build and operate Japan’s first IRs. While everyone agrees that the potential scope of the market is vast, without the precise locations and the terms of regulation yet being clarified, estimations of the ultimate size of this market remain little more than guesswork. Progress in the year was once again stalled by politics, though operators are hoping to push forward in 2018 with both the legislative framework and their own groundwork.
For Chicago-based operator Rush Street Gaming (RSG), building an IR in a smaller, regional location like Tomakomai or Nagasaki is not a consolation prize for missing out on one of the major Japanese urban markets, but is itself the main event. In an exclusive interview with Asia Gaming Brief, RSG Chairman Neil Bluhm and CFO Tim Drehkoff—as well as Steve Rittvo, CEO of Innovation Project Development, who the company has retained to help them win their bid in Japan—laid out their priorities and strategies.
Brazil and Japan are two of the most hotly anticipated casino markets, but how do they stack up against one another and which country is the most appealing for international casino operators and investors? The two nations have entwined cultural links, mainly due to mass migration throughout the 20th Century. In fact, Brazil is home to the world’s largest Japanese-descendant population outside Japan. One other thing Brazil and Japan have in common is that they both appear to be on the cusp of introducing legalized casino resorts after years of false starts and delays.
Singapore’s two gaming operators reported an improvement in Q2 results, helped by cost controls, lower bad debts and higher premium play, though analysts see few catalysts for significant expansion of the market. In 2007, Singapore granted Las Vegas Sands and Genting Singapore a license for one resort each, with exclusivity until 2017. Those licenses were renewed in 2016 for a further three years, but the government is not expected to allow any new entrants, therefore keeping a lid on the size of the island-state’s gaming market.
The push to legalize casinos in Thailand appears to be gathering momentum, though experts say any reforms are unlikely to have much of an impact on the thriving illegal market, which is estimated at more than $5 billion a year. Academics in the country, who focus on gaming, say there is increasing confidence that the issue of casinos will be raised again after the next general election, expected in late 2018. It would be the most significant step in gaming industry reforms since Thailand became a constitutional monarchy in 1932.
Thailand would be a major draw for foreign investors were it to legalize its casino industry and would likely provide significant competition for other regional jurisdictions, according to panelists at the recent ASEAN Gaming Summit. The Southeast Asian country already has well-established tourist infrastructure pulling in more than 32 million visitors a year, though the real draw would be if locals were allowed to gamble.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang praised Macau’s efforts to diversify its economy during a three-day visit last year, but market experts say operators are still trying to get the recipe right when it comes to non-gaming attractions and face an uphill struggle. Revenue from non-gaming has improved, however, Macau is still far from being a destination that will attract visitors for its tourism offering off the casino floor.
Ask many mainland Chinese what their dream travel destination is and the answer is unlikely to be Macau. According to a survey by CLSA, Macau came bottom out of a list of 21 destinations, with Europe, the U.S. and Australia topping the list. So, could Sheldon Adelson have hit upon a winning formula with his latest resort -- the $2.8 billion Parisian? The property, like its sister next door, aims to bring a little bit of Europe to the Cotai strip, providing a taste of all things French without the lengthy voyage and language complexities.
Galaxy Entertainment added to its range of non-gaming attractions in June, opening Macau’s first Apple Store, as operators seek to appeal to a broader market to replace the shrunken VIP sector. Macau now gets around 45 percent of its revenue from the mass sector, up from the low point of 26 percent in 2Q11. Although the mass sector has significantly higher margins than the VIP at 25 percent to 55 percent compared with 10 percent, for most, that shift is still not yet showing through in the bottom line. Getting the marketing message right may be key to tapping the mass market.
Singapore’s two operators are seeking to add more non-gaming attractions to boost growth as income from their casinos continues to drag, with results released this week showing an unexpected drop in mass revenue at Marina Bay Sands. Casino revenue for the quarter fell 1.6 percent to $556.7 million, with adjusted property EBITDA dropping 1.7 percent to $357 million. The property reported a drop of 29 percent in its rolling chip volume, but more unexpected was the almost 11 percent drop in mass market volume year-on-year. Slot handle gained 6 percent.
Thailand, whose conservative Buddhist society has long been opposed to gambling, has again renewed the debate over legalizing casinos as the government eyes a potential boost to tax revenue and tourism numbers. The discussion comes amid signs the public view may be changing, with surveys pointing to growing support for legal casinos, which could generate more than $2.7 billion in annual tax revenue and boost foreign tourist arrivals by up to 50 percent, according to recent studies, backed by the Thai Excise Department.
The multi-billion properties opening up on Macau’s Cotai strip are still likely to be viable, despite the slump in gaming revenue in the territory, though returns will fall far short of the levels expected when the resorts were first planned, analysts say. The six operators are set to almost double their room capacity over the next two years at a time of unprecedented uncertainty for the revenue outlook.
Asia Gaming Brief asked its advisors David Green, John English, Luis Mesquita de Melo, Andrew Klebanow and Steve Gallaway, to look ahead and share with us what they believe are the underlying currents for the Asian Gaming industry in 2016. Views may differ but the one common denominator is the shifting of the sands - something will have to give…An end to the IR “arms race," by David Green The strong will survive, by Steve GallawayEnough about the Millennials, by Andrew KlebanowMacau will continue the race to reinvent, by John EnglishThe “golden” gap for emerging jurisdictions, by Luis Mesquita de Melo
As Macau’s gross gambling revenue has slumped, operators have been paring costs to the bone to protect margins, with the first casualty usually being spending on marketing and player reinvestment.However, this may be a short-sighted approach that will cost dearly in the longer term.
As Macau’s gaming industry sees revenues decrease and high-rollers look to take their money elsewhere, operators have had to shift their focus and resources to capture a bigger slice of the mass market, which includes opening up their non-gaming elements.
Macau’s retail malls, dominated by the luxury brands favored by high rolling mainland Chinese, are turning to more affordable High Street names as VIP revenue falls, but the shift is unlikely to have a major impact on operators’ profits, analysts say.Although retail revenues have moderated in Macau, the downturn has been less severe than the slump in overall gross gambling revenue, which dropped 36.2 percent in June, declining for the 13th consecutive month. Las Vegas Sands also reported strong growth in its retail operations in Q2, though future success may hinge on getting the brand mix right.
Las Vegas Sands’ Chief Executive Officer, Sheldon Adelson, has offered to spend up to US$6.0 billion on a 450-room entertainment and casino complex in central Bangkok, but local support is far from certain, even though some senior figures have thrown their weight behind legalizing gambling in the Kingdom.
With Macau gambling revenue falling for the 12th straight month in June and new multi-billion dollar casinos set to double capacity in the territory, it has become more important than ever for operators to find a way to stand out from the crowd -- but does it have to break the budget? Kevin Clayton, chief marketing officer for Galaxy Entertainment Group, cites the old saying “differentiate or die,” to describe the need for the companies to carve out their market niche and shape their brands through the best use of all available marketing tools.
The government’s mid-term review of Macau’s six gaming operators is now well underway, assessing the strengths and weaknesses of the concessionaires and sub-concessionaires ahead of the expiry of current concessions.Against a backdrop of a year of falling gambling revenue and a crackdown on corruption by mainland China, it has added a further layer of regulatory uncertainty in the market.