- Osaka mayor talks about seven brands interested in an IR
- Licensing procedures should start soon or risk missing targets
- Melco shapes up as a regional leader
With the clock ticking against the future Integrated Resort in Japan, lawmakers must speed the licensing process and announce the names of the approved brands so that the resort would be ready by 2025.
Seven Brands Determined to Build in Future IR
A total of seven operators are competing for an entry in what would-be an Integrated Resort (IR) targeting gaming activities in Osaka, Japan. Osaka City Mayor Ichiro Matsui suggested the names of the brands that have shown serious commitment to opening a property on the territory of the prefecture, as part of a future gaming hub.
Holding a briefing on Monday 30, Mr. Matsui commented that five out of the seven operators were overseas brands. While Mr. Matsui refrained from releasing the names of the would-be investors, his suggestion is in line with the seven companies that have been signaling their interest to enter the future Japanese IR, including:
- MGM Resorts International
- Wynn Resorts
- Genting Singapore Ltd
- Las Vegas Sands Corp.
- Melco Resorts and Entertainment Ltd
- Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd
- Osaka-based alliance
While Mr. Matsui hasn’t really shed more light on the development plans and actors in the future Integrated Resort (IR), he continues to maintain lawmakers’ stance for an IR in Osaka before 2025.
Time Is Ticking Against the IR
With no names and a prefecture still released, Japan will have to hurry up and begin issuing licenses. Failing to act on time, building the $10-billion IR by 2025 would be a stretch that might not come along as intended. Many companies have made a move on Japan already.
Caesars Entertainment, even though not on the list of operators to act quickly, has done quite a bit in the past to reaffirm its position towards the IR project. The company allegedly donated money to politicians of the ruling party to help the project along, which in Japan is considered a bribe.
Last year, the company promised to sign up a 100-year partnership if it was let to operate as one of the casino brands in the future project.
Melco looks like a good pick for the region as well. Having successfully developed scalable business models in Manila and Macau, Melco’s clout in the world of gaming has grown significantly.
Melco recently announced the acquisition of Australian gaming firm Crown Resorts Ltd, which, according to brokerages is a clear sign that the company is readying up to break into the Japanese market. While Caesars, Wynn and MGM have been seen as the leaders, Melco’s recent shift in financial assets might put it ahead of the pack.