Genting Singapore Plc, the developer and owner of the Resorts World Sentosa casino resort in Singapore, has set up eight wholly owned subsidiaries in Japan. It said so in a filing to Singapore Exchange Securities Trading Ltd where the firm is listed on the main board.
In December 2012, Lim Kok Tay, chairman of Genting Singapore’s Malaysian parent company Genting Bhd, said at a press conference in the Lion City that Genting was interested in investing in a Japanese casino resort if legislation were passed in that country to legalise such venues.
According to the latest Genting Singapore filing, the Japanese companies – each with a nominal registered capital of JPY2.00 (2 US cents) – include Resorts World Japan Co Ltd, Resorts World Tokyo Co Ltd and Resorts World Osaka Co Ltd, and “will be principally engaged in investment holding, leisure and related businesses”.
The Japanese government has identified Tokyo and Osaka as likely venues for Japanese casino resorts, with a third possibly in a provincial location yet to be determined.
But an analyst told GGRAsia on Wednesday: “I’m sure setting up these companies is standard operating procedure by Genting Singapore and doesn’t necessarily indicate any imminent announcement. Everything depends in any case on the initial bill to legalise casinos.”
That first bill must have been passed by the end of the current session of the Diet, Japan’s parliament, on June 22, for there to be any chance of casino resorts being ready at or shortly after the Summer Olympics due in Tokyo in 2020, the Japan Gaming Congress heard earlier this month.
In February Yin Shao Yang, an analyst at Maybank Kim Eng Securities Pte Ltd, a Singapore-based investment broking and securities group, said it was too early to factor the company’s possible Japan market entry into the Genting Singapore stock price.
Also in February, Bloomberg News reported that Genting Singapore wanted to develop a US$2.2 billion casino resort on South Korea’s Jeju island with Hong Kong-listed Chinese property company Landing International Development Ltd, in order to target Chinese gamblers.
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"I am not going to speculate on what the [casino licence refreshment] tender requirements would be. I have full confidence and faith in the Macau government to treat everyone fairly"
Wilfred Wong Ying Wai
President and chief operating officer of Macau-based casino operator Sands China