Philippine gaming company Leisure and Resorts World Corp says it is to spend PHP1.65 billion (US$32.2 million) to redeem all of the group’s outstanding preferred shares.
The redeemed shares will be then treated as treasury shares “until and unless the shares are retired or reissued,” the firm said in a Friday filing to the Philippine Stock Exchange.
“To date, the company has no plans to reissue the said shares,” it further noted. At the turn of the year the group had said it was mulling a redemption move for its preferred stock.
A total of 1.65 billion units of preferred shares – the entire amount of such stock – is to be redeemed at a price of PHP1.00 per share, with the exercise to take place on January 31 next year.
The decision was taken at a special board meeting on Thursday, added Friday’s notice.
The group also stated that – based on the number of its outstanding shares in foreign ownership as of September 30, i.e., 18.43 percent – the redemption exercise would have marginal effect, taking foreign ownership to 18.37 percent.
While the redemption move would reduce the balance of preferred shares listed on the Philippine bourse to zero, the group would maintain its nearly 1.2 billion units of common stock listed on the exchange, the filing noted.
Among the businesses run by Leisure and Resorts World are a subsidiary that controls the Midas Hotel and Casino in Manila.
Until 2017, Leisure and Resorts World had a revenue-sharing deal with Belle Corp, an investor in the City of Dreams Manila casino resort that is operated by a local unit of Asian casino developer Melco Resorts and Entertainment Ltd.
Other businesses run by the group include a unit that runs slot-machine arcades across the country. Another business, the Cagayan Leisure and Resort Corp, known as First Cagayan, is an online gaming licensor in the Cagayan Freeport and Special Economic Zone in the northeast of Luzon, the main island of the Philippine archipelago.
In July, Leisure and Resorts World said it was ready to expand its presence in the Philippines market, backed by PHP4.4-billion raised in March via a private placement of shares.
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”We believe the positive stance from China towards Macau would help market sentiment in the near term despite limited short term benefit to the [casino] gross gaming revenue”
Kenneth Fong, Lok Kan Chan and Rebecca Law
Analysts at Credit Suisse