Two casino entrepreneurs have slipped down the top 20 in Forbes’ “2021 Malaysia’s 50 Richest” list, amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
At number nine – down from four in 2020 – now with an estimated net worth of US$3.4 billion, is Chen Lip Keong (pictured, left), chief executive of Hong Kong-listed NagaCorp Ltd, which has a casino monopoly in the Cambodian capital Phnom Penh, and is also developing a venue in Vladivostok, Russia.
Mr Chen’s 2021 net worth is down 35.8 percent on the estimated US$5.3 billion he held last year.
At number 11 this year, down from seven, and with an estimated net worth this year of US$2.55 billion, is Lim Kok Thay, chairman of conglomerate Genting Bhd.
Mr Lim’s 2021 net worth slipped 20.3 percent on the estimated US$3.2 billion he had last year.
Via a network of associated companies, the Genting brand has global casino operations, including in Malaysia, Singapore, the United Kingdom, the United States, the Bahamas, and Egypt, as well as in casino cruise ships. The group is also a contender for a casino licence in Yokohoma, Japan.
Both men saw their fortunes dented this year by the Covid-19 pandemic, which has seen temporary closure of their respective casino operations in Asia Pacific, and in Genting’s case, beyond the region.
NagaCorp’s NagaWorld complex in Cambodia has been shuttered since late in the first quarter, amid Covid-19 cases in Phnom Penh.
The casino at Resorts World Genting, Genting Malaysia Ltd’s flagship resort near Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, was temporarily shuttered from May 24 due to a so-called movement control order imposed by the country’s government to tackle the spread of Covid-19.
The whole complex was temporarily shut down from Monday (May 31).
Overall, enterpreneurs on the 2021 Forbes Malaysia Rich List saw a rebound in their collective wealth, as it rose 14 percent to nearly US$90 billion this year, after declining for two years, said the media outlet.
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