United States-based tribal casino operator Mohegan Gaming and Entertainment has teamed with a Japan unit of Hong Kong-listed Oshidori International Holdings Ltd, for a tilt at creating a casino resort in the Japanese prefecture of Nagasaki, said a joint press release issued on Thursday by the two groups.
The announcement quoted Mario Kontomerkos, Mohegan Gaming’s chief executive, as saying that his firm has considered the “cross-marketing” opportunity between its Inspire Entertainment Resort project in South Korea, and a Nagasaki integrated resort (IR) venture.
“We are honoured to work with Oshidori International and leverage their team’s unparalleled experience on this IR licence bid in one of the fastest growing markets in the world,” Mr Kontomerkos remarked as included in the Thursday release.
On January 20, a spokesperson for Inspire Entertainment Resort – which will have a foreigner-only casino in line with South Korean law – confirmed to GGRAsia it had submitted a request to the local government to postpone the opening of the South Korea scheme to 2023.
Mr Kontomerkos noted in the Thursday announcement on Japan: “Our growth strategy took into consideration the significant cross-marketing opportunity between Project Inspire in Korea and Kyushu, Japan.”
The latter was a reference to the Japanese region of which Nagasaki prefecture is part.
The CEO added: “As operators of 10 properties globally including one of the largest integrated resorts in the Western hemisphere, we are eager to bring our expertise,” to a Japan venture in Nagasaki.
Oshidori International’s Japan unit for pursuit of a Nagasaki casino scheme, is Oshidori International Development Godogaisha (GK). Alejandro Yemenidjian, formerly a casino executive in Las Vegas, Nevada, in the U.S., is the president and chief executive of Oshidori International Development.
“We are proud to partner with Mohegan Gaming and Entertainment on this landmark development opportunity. Though our joint bid, we aim to highlight the rich culture and diversity of the Nagasaki area, and look toward to the positive impact this project will have on the entire Kyushu region,” Mr Yemenidjian remarked as cited in the Thursday statement.
The site for Nagasaki’s proposed casino resort is land within the Huis Ten Bosch theme park (pictured) in Sasebo city, Nagasaki. The Nagasaki prefectural government started earlier this month, its request-for-proposal (RFP) process regarding the possibility of getting a casino resort there, and aimed to choose a resort operating partner in “summer to autumn” this year.
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