The Macau government has not yet decided on the number of new live gaming tables it will grant casino operator Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd for the upcoming second phase launch of the group’s flagship Cotai property and a neighbouring revamped casino hotel.
Macau’s Secretary for Economy and Finance Lionel Leong Vai Tac (pictured) on Tuesday confirmed the government had received a request from Galaxy Entertainment for additional live gaming tables to be used in the HKD19.6-billion (US$2.5-billion) Galaxy Macau Phase 2 and HKD5-billion Broadway Macau. The two properties are scheduled for a May 27 opening.
Mr Leong said that the request was being processed. The result would be made public in a “transparent manner”, according to a government statement.
The statement did not mention how many new tables Galaxy Entertainment requested.
The firm last month confirmed it had already formally submitted an application for more gaming tables. While Galaxy Entertainment did not disclose the number of new tables requested for Galaxy Phase 2, company chairman Francis Lui Yiu Tung shed a little more light on the neighbouring revamped property, formerly called Grand Waldo but now to be known as Broadway Macau.
“We used to have 38 tables at Grand Waldo, so the initial plan is that we could bring 30 tables back in,” stated the executive on the sidelines of an event on March 30.
The company has said in previous public statements that Galaxy Macau Phase 2 has capacity for 500 tables and 1,000 slot machines.
Analysts at UBS Securities Asia Ltd believe the casino operator will get significantly fewer new tables than the firm had expected when it started the development. “We think market expectations for net new tables have now come down to around 150, with allocations below that still likely to disappoint,” analysts Anthony Wong and Angus Chan wrote in a note on March 19.
No equal division of tables
In his Tuesday comments, Mr Leong also confirmed that the market wide cap on live gaming tables would not be changed. The government has imposed a cap that seeks to limit the expansion in the number of live dealer tables to 3 percent compound annual growth until end-2022 from a base of 5,485 tables recorded by the authorities at the end of the fourth quarter in 2012.
The Macau official however stated that new gaming tables available under the cap would not be equally divided between the city’s six gaming operators. He said the government would look into the non-gaming components of the casino resorts each operator is building in Cotai and how each company forms partnerships with local small- and medium-sized enterprises before deciding on table allocation.
Mr Leong added that, as part of the table allocation process, the government would ensure the market landscape remains “competitive”, the statement said.
Galaxy Entertainment last month announced new local restaurant and retail partners for Broadway.
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