May 19, 2022 Newsdesk Latest News, Philippines, Top of the deck
Bloomberry Resorts Corp wants to build a third casino resort on the Philippines’ main island, Luzon. It would be at Paniman, a coastal community in Cavite, about 66 kilometres (41 miles) southwest of Metro Manila, the firm said in a Thursday filing to the country’s main bourse.
The company is planning to invest, calculated on average price per square metre, PHP7.55 billion (US$144.3 million) on land there.
A new unit called Solaire Entertainment Property Holdings Inc, and referred to as SEPHI, “intends to develop the Paniman property into an integrated resort and entertainment complex with a world-class casino, hotel, golf course, commercial, residential and mixed-use development,” said the parent’s statement to the Philippine Stock Exchange.
The filing said Solaire Entertainment would acquire just under 2.80 million sq ms (81.31-million sq feet) of “titled and cleared” land for the project, at an average price of PHP2,700 per sq m.
Bloomberry said the agreement for land purchase – reached on Wednesday – was with a group of landowners: Boulevard Holdings Inc; Puerto Azul Land, Inc; Ternate Development Corp; and Monte Sol Development Corp.
Bloomberry added: “This Paniman project is expected to commence after the Solaire North in Vertis, Quezon City has started its commercial operations.”
That property – to the northeast of Manila – remains “on track to open in 2023,” said Bloomberry Resorts’ chairman and chief executive, Enrique Razon, at its annual meeting for stockholders, held on April 21.
The firm already runs a large-scale venue, Solaire Resort and Casino, in Entertainment City in Metro Manila.
Last week, Bloomberry Resorts reported first-quarter consolidated net revenue up 9.1 percent sequentially.
The firm has in the past stated ambitions to have overseas operations – beyond a casino investment it has in Jeju, South Korea. The group mentioned a possible project near Incheon in that country, and also explored the possibility of bidding for a Japan casino licence.
But the Philippines has been identified by investment analysts as one of the strongest regional candidates for casino gross gaming revenue (GGR) growth. Such GGR could reach 85 percent of pre-pandemic level by the fourth quarter this year, said a note in late April from banking group Morgan Stanley.
Factors for growth cited by commentators include strong domestic demand, including the ability to offer online play to domestic customers via bricks-and-mortar casinos; and return of inbound tourism, as the country eases Covid-19 restrictions.
Since March 1, casino resorts in Metro Manila have been allowed to operate at full capacity, as that area was placed under “alert level 1”, the lowest level of countermeasure against Covid-19.
About 265,553 foreigners visited the country from February 10 to April 17, reported the Philippine News Agency.
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