SM Investments Corp, a Philippines conglomerate controlled by the family of billionaire Henry Sy (pictured), in a filing on Thursday appeared to play down a report that it was planning a casino project in Cebu in the Philippines.
The Sy family is already an investor in the country’s casino sector via its indirect interest in City of Dreams Manila, a US$1.2-billion property in Entertainment City operated by a unit of Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd.
The Philippine Star on Thursday quoted Jose Sio, chief financial officer of SM Investments, saying at an investment conference that the firm had 30 hectares (74 acres) of available land it was considering for a possible go-it-alone casino scheme on Cebu, a holiday island popular with domestic and foreign tourists.
The report also said Mr Sio noted the firm would have to consider market and investor sentiments before deciding on whether to pursue such a project.
But in a filing to the Philippine Stock Exchange the same day, Mr Sio said the firm had “no specific plans” for such a scheme.
He said: “At the Latham and Watkins Conference, we only mentioned the possibility of having a gaming project in Cebu given the development in the area. However, the company does not have any specific plans to pursue this as it will depend on market condition and prevailing government policy.”
SM Investments holds its interest in City of Dreams Manila via its subsidiary Premium Leisure Corp, which has a share in the gaming revenues and is part of a consortium that holds the casino licence for the resort.
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President and chief operating officer of Macau-based casino operator Sands China