Boutique casino investor Donaco International Ltd says it has a deal with a marketing firm to bring gambling junkets from “Macau, Hong Kong, Malaysia and elsewhere” to Donaco’s Star Vegas Resort and Club (pictured) in Cambodia.
Vivo Tower Ltd – described in a Friday filing by Donaco as an international casino marketing agency – will pay Donaco annual fees and operate a revenue share arrangement with the casino operator for the right to bring high roller players to the Star Vegas property, said the filing by Donaco to the Australian Securities Exchange.
Star Vegas is in Poipet, a town near Cambodia’s border with Thailand. According to previous background information provided by Donaco, currently 90 percent of Star Vegas customers are from Thailand, a jurisdiction where casino gambling is illegal.
The new international VIP marketing partner for the resort will tender a “minimum fixed fee of US$1.5 million in financial year 2018, increasing to US$3 million in subsequent years, plus a revenue share which varies depending on the junket operators engaged by them,” said the casino operator.
Donaco added that Vivo Tower had already engaged a Malaysian junket operator – identified as Da Kim Global Group – under the new arrangement.
Donaco said that Da Kim Global currently takes VIP customers to Genting Bhd properties in Malaysia, Singapore and Manila, and provides such players also to NagaWorld in Phnom Penh, operated by NagaCorp, and other casinos in Macau and Australia.
“Da Kim will commence bringing VIP customers to the Star Vegas from 1 July 2017,” added Donaco in its announcement.
Donaco said it had also arranged personal appearances soon in Thailand and at Star Vegas by some former players of English football club Manchester United, in order to promote an Asian Poker Tour (APT) Southeast Asia 2017 event to be held at Star Vegas starting on July 1.
In August 2015, Donaco had announced a three-year sponsorship deal with Manchester United. Donaco said that under the deal, it had been appointed “exclusive casino resort partner” of the football club in Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar and South Korea. The Manchester United brand is well known and well supported in those countries according to some market research sources.
In its latest filing Donaco stated: “The purpose of the Manchester United partnership is to increase awareness and visitation of Donaco’s Star Vegas property for the target market of middle class Thai visitors, as well as signifying the quality of the property for international visitors.”
Donaco said some Manchester United “Class of ’92” players would be the guests of honour at the July 1 APT tournament, which will launch the venue’s Poker King Club. The players will also reportedly appear at a press conference in Bangkok, Thailand, on June 30, and play a friendly game against a local Thai team, Pattaya United, before travelling to Star Vegas for the poker tournament on July 1.
In a May 1 press release, Donaco said it had signed a three-year deal with Kings Consulting Ltd, under which Star Vegas would host a minimum of three international poker tournaments. Kings Consulting – a unit of Macau VIP junket room investor Suncity Group – is the owner of the Poker King Club brand.
“Our relationships with Manchester United, Poker King Club, Asian Poker Tour, and Vivo Tower Ltd are all working together, indicating the potential of the Star Vegas property to appeal to a new group of international customers,” said Joey Lim Keong Yew, chief executive and managing director of Donaco, in a prepared statement in Friday’s release.
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”China has been strengthening the control over capital flow, and the impact of that has already been reflected [on Macau’s gaming revenue trend]. There should not be any bigger impact from the new… legislation [on the mainland] … on the gaming revenue trend here”
Wilfred Wong Ying Wai
President of Macau casino operator Sands China