PH Resorts Group Holdings Inc said in a Thursday filing to the Philippine Stock Exchange that it had signed a letter of intent with an entity called ASKI Japan Ltd, regarding provision of junket-player services to PH Resorts’ under-construction Emerald Bay casino resort (pictured in a file photo) in Cebu.
ASKI Japan was described in the announcement as an affiliate of Global Mix Corp, a “provider of integrated resort [IR] consulting services in Japan”. PH Resorts is the gaming and hospitality subsidiary of Philippine conglomerate Udenna Corp.
The letter of intent was signed on Wednesday between ASKI Japan chief executive, Nobuhiro Imigi, and PH Resorts’ chief operating officer (COO), José Angel Sueiro.
“It will form the basis for ASKI to be a potential junket operator in PH Resorts’ Emerald Bay integrated resort,” added the document.
PH Resorts said in the announcement that ASKI Japan offered “junket and VIP gaming services for Japanese players within Asia”.
Such services included “junket operations” in Paradise City at Incheon and at Paradise Casino Busan, two properties managed by Paradise Co Ltd, an operator in South Korea of casino venues available to foreigners only.
The filing additionally noted that ASKI Japan also offered such junket services at “two integrated resorts in Entertainment City in the Philippines” – a reference to large-scale casino complexes in the Philippine capital Manila – “under the Friday Club brand”.
Mr Sueiro was quoted in the filing as saying: “We are very excited to get ASKI as a potential partner in the junket and VIP segment of Emerald Bay.”
The COO added: “The Japanese are no strangers to the Philippines, particularly Cebu, and we believe that Emerald Bay will be a very welcome attraction to them when it opens.”
ASKI Japan CEO Mr Imigi was quoted as stating: “We want to be ready and hit the ground running when the tourism and gaming industry recovers from the pandemic.”
He added: “Our players are always looking for new and fun gaming destinations and Emerald Bay fits the bill with its convenient location just a few minutes from the airport and with a long and beautiful beachfront feature.”
Thursday’s filing from PH Resorts said that “upon completion of the first phase, Emerald Bay will feature 122 gaming tables for mass, premium mass and junkets; 600 electronic gaming machines and 270 hotel room bays”.
According to company comments disclosed by Philippine media earlier this week, the management at PH Resorts “is pushing for a soft opening” of Emerald Bay “by the end of 2021.”
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Aggregate number of licensed junkets in Macau as of January 2022