The chief operating officer of Russian operations at Summit Ascent Holdings Ltd is leaving to join Melco International Development Ltd. Both casino investment firms are controlled by gaming entrepreneur Lawrence Ho Yau Lung.
Summit Ascent did not mention in its Monday filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange what role the departing executive Craig Ballantyne would play at Melco International.
Stylianos Tsifetakis has meanwhile been appointed as acting chief operating officer – Russian operations, for Summit Ascent.
The firm, which is the lead developer of the Tigre de Cristal casino resort in the Russian Far East, posted a loss of HKD5.4 million for the first half of the year, compared to a profit of approximately HKD5.5 million a year earlier.
Mr Tsifetakis, aged 46, “joined the group in a senior management capacity for almost three years, and is currently the deputy to Mr Ballantyne at Tigre de Cristal,” Summit Ascent stated in its Monday release.
Mr Ballantyne is set to leave Summit Ascent “in the next few weeks” upon “completing the handover of his current duties and responsibilities” to Mr Tsifetakis, the document added.
Summit Ascent stated that Mr Tsifetakis has over 20 years of experience in the casino and hospitality industry, including in Greece, the United Kingdom, Romania and Kazakhstan.
The firm announced in a separate release the appointment of Eric Landheer as a company executive director with effect from last Monday (September 4).
Mr Landheer, aged 48, is currently Summit Ascent’s director for corporate finance and strategy. He joined the company in March 2014.
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”We expect Goa to quickly become a US$1 billion market as it transitions to land-based casinos (from US$150 million today), which is still just a fraction of India’s total GGR potential of US$10 billion to US$17 billion”
Analyst at Union Gaming Securities Asia