Japanese gaming company Universal Entertainment Corp says it is changing the arrangements that govern its relations with investors.
Universal Entertainment told the Jasdaq Securities Exchange on Tuesday that it was making the changes because it had seen a big increase in inquiries from investors at home and abroad, including in relation to possible expansion into the nascent Japanese casino industry.
The company stated the increase in inquiries followed several industry developments. They were: the enactment of legislation to make casino gaming legal in Japan; a series of company announcements about the opening of a Japanese branch of Tiger Resort, Leisure and Entertainment Inc – also known as TRLEI – the entity that runs the Okada Manila casino resort in the Philippines; and Universal’s acquisition of AsiabestGroup International Inc, which will become an indirect subsidiary for the purpose of floating shares in the Philippines.
“Under such circumstances, the company has reinforced its investor relations structure in order 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 told the exchange. “Additionally, the company intends to further enhance the information that it will disclose to investors going forward.”
Universal Entertainment said it had put in place a new investor relations structure which will serve the entire group, including Tiger Resort, Leisure and Entertainment.
The company stated it would try to give investors more information, starting with the information contained in its report for the third quarter of this financial year, which will include figures for earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation; for casino gross gaming revenue; and for key indicators of the quarterly performance of each of its main businesses, such as casinos or hotels.
The company stated it would also arrange a business report session or conference call for institutional investors after making its third-quarter report.
Universal Entertainment founder Kazuo Okada is trying to regain control of the company, and he and the company are in dispute about several aspects of how it is run.
In another statement to the Jasdaq, made on Monday, Universal Entertainment said it had asked Tokyo’s bar association to discipline a lawyer who served as an auditor of the company for 12 months between 2014 and 2015, accusing him of various wrongdoing, including overcharging and working for the company under an invalid contract.
The claims have been made against Yuki Arai, a noted short-seller of Japanese stocks and a lawyer who represented Universal Entertainment while it was embroiled in an alleged bribery scandal in 2014.
It was alleged at the time that the then management of Tiger Resort, Leisure and Entertainment had bribed officials in the Philippines to ensure it won a licence to establish what has since become the Okada Manila resort.
In December 2014 it was reported that the country’s then prosecutor general had dropped Kazuo Okada’s name from the bribery case due to lack of “sufficient evidence”.
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