Hong Kong-listed Far East Consortium International Ltd expects to enjoy a “steady contribution” in profit and cash flow from its 4.99-percent stake in Australian casino company The Star Entertainment Group Ltd, following the latter’s recently-announced policy of increasing dividend payout to shareholders, amounting to at least 70 percent of normalised profit after tax. So said on Wednesday Far East’s managing director, Chris Hoong Cheong Thard.
Far East, a real estate conglomerate, is also a partner in the AUD2.4-billion (US$1.8-billion) Queen’s Wharf Brisbane casino resort scheme in Brisbane, Queensland, in Australia, which is due to have a rolling opening starting in the second half of 2022.
Mr Hoong’s comments were to Chinese-language media in Hong Kong – during a press briefing on Wednesday regarding his firm’s annual business performance.
In an April 16 filing, Far East said it had completed the subscription of its 4.99 percent stake in The Star Entertainment. The Australian target firm has said in filings that Chow Tai Fook Group – founded by the late Cheng Yu Tung, a long-time business associate of former Macau gaming monopolist Stanley Ho Hung Sun – has also acquired a 4.99 percent stake in The Star Entertainment. The aggregate consideration paid by the two Asian firms was AUD490 million.
Far East could achieve “synergy” with The Star Entertainment by introducing it to “Asian clients”, Mr Hoong told the media in his Wednesday remarks. His firm also expected to benefit from what were described as co-development opportunities via land resources provided by the Australian casino firm, media reports stated.
In a March 28 announcement by Far East about its stake in the Australian operator, it mentioned “potential mixed-use property” development with The Star Entertainment, and at “other nominated developments which will be complementary to The Star [Entertainment's] operations”, as well as to Far East’s own plans for real estate development in Australia.
Mr Hoong reiterated on Wednesday the 2022 first-phase launch for Queen’s Wharf Brisbane. Chow Tai Fook Group is also involved in that.
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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