Singapore’s Genting Positioning Itself for Japan Casino Bid

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Casino operator Genting Singapore believes it “has sufficient financial resources” and is “well placed” to bid for a casino license in Japan, according to financial statements from the company’s fourth-quarter 2016 results announcement.

"The group has completed a study of our capital structure, and over the next three years will execute a corporate finance strategy that fulfills our various investment requirements including integrated resort projects, and yet maintaining an efficient capital funding model,” Genting Singapore said.

Casino gambling in Japan became legalized on December 26 though investment analysts believe it won’t be until at least 2021 when the first land-based casino resort opens its doors.

"The field is getting a lot more crowded and suggests the odds [for a Japanese casino licence] are getting longer for Genting Singapore,” Union Gaming Securities Asia Ltd’s Grant Govertsen said in a note following the casino operator’s results announcement.

Sands Las Vegas Chairman Sheldon Adelson said this week that he believed a casino bid in Japan could cost upwards of $10 billion.

"It would be at least what we paid in Singapore, $6 billion including the land, but it could be as much as $10 billion," Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Sheldon Adelson said on Tuesday at an investor conference in Tokyo, referring to the Marina Bay Sands property in Singapore.

In addition to Sands and Genting, major U.S. operators including MGM Resorts International (MGM.N) and Wynn Resorts Ltd (WYNN.O) are also among the runners for the first license, while Galaxy Entertainment Corp Ltd (GALE.BO) and Australia's Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd (MPEL.O) have also expressed interest.

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