The chief executive of Hong Kong-listed gaming investor Imperial Pacific International Holdings Ltd says the firm got “a bargain” regarding its deal for an exclusive casino licence on Saipan, the main island of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
“Imperial Pacific secured a 40-year exclusive casino resort development licence and although we must pay US$35 million each year to retain the licence, this was quite a bargain,” Mark Brown (pictured) stated in a Thursday company release.
“Macau has a 35-percent tax on [gross gaming] revenues, but Saipan’s tax rate is only 5 percent, a number which can be reduced even further by rebates and expense deductions,” he said.
Mr Brown added: “Macau may always be the leading player in the global gaming industry, but we are building something very special on Saipan and in the bargain, we are making Saipan… a world class destination resort.”
Imperial Pacific operates a US$25-million temporary casino (pictured) in Saipan, officially opened on November 27. It had a total of 16 VIP gaming tables and 32 mass tables at the end of the first quarter of 2016.
Imperial Pacific reported a total rolling chip volume of approximately US$15.22 billion for the first seven months of 2016, an average of US$2.17 billion. That is equivalent to just a small fraction – well below a tenth – of the total rolling chip volume market wide in Macau for the same period.
In May, the firm said that its VIP gaming operations in Saipan had reached saturation.
Imperial Pacific’s Thursday release stated that the firm’s plans for Saipan included “at least a half dozen major hotel/casinos, private villas and other resort properties, shopping malls (for duty free shoppers), a huge conference centre, world class golf courses designed by Greg Norman and the world’s largest water park.”
The company is currently developing the Grand Mariana Casino and Hotel Resort, scheduled to open in the first quarter of 2017. The US$500-million venue will feature 350 hotel rooms, 15 villas, more than 200 gaming tables and 400-plus slot machines.
“We are expecting fantastic results” from the Grand Mariana Casino and Hotel Resort, Mr Brown stated.
The release added that Imperial Pacific also was investing “millions of U.S. dollars” to upgrade Saipan’s transport facilities.
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Summit Ascent, lead developer of Tigre de Cristal