Asia round-up: The Trojan Tiger; SJM’s revenue reshuffle, NSW warning & more

Home » Asia round-up: The Trojan Tiger; SJM’s revenue reshuffle, NSW warning & more

SJM is in the process of negotiating new revenue-sharing agreements with its satellite casinos.
SJM Holdings, the concession holder in Macau, intends to implement a new revenue sharing arrangement with its satellite casinos.
SJM will demand a larger cut, leaving satellites with lower revenue amounts.

According to the operator’s VP and CEO, Ambrose So Shu Fai, rising costs are putting financial pressures on casino operators.

“[Gaming operators] cannot sack people [local staff] and have to afford the running expenses, as usual, averaging more than [HK]$10m a day, while the business volume has declined,” So told Hong Kong media.

He went on to say that the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as the Chinese government’s strict cross-border travel and illegal gambling policies, had all had an impact on the business environment.

Okada Manila has been reclaimed by Universal Entertainment and Tiger Resort Asia.

According to Universal Entertainment, Tiger Resort Asia (TRAL) has retaken control of Okada Manila.

Okada had held the casino since the spring, but it has now been reclaimed after members of Tiger Resort Leisure & Entertainment’s (TRLEI) parent company TRAL, which is owned by Universal Entertainment, posed as casino employees and took control of the casino on Friday, September 2, 2022.

TRAL members were accompanied by PAGCOR and police officers when they reclaimed control on September 2.

Despite videos and reports of violent scenes, Universal claims that the casino’s reopening has been “generally peaceful.”

“[Gaming operators] cannot lay off people [local employees] and must continue to cover operating expenses, which average more than [HK]$10 million per day, despite a decline in business volume.”

SJM Holdings’ VP and CEO, Ambrose So Shu Fai

Furthermore, the Philippines’ regulator PAGCOR has stated that it is withdrawing its recognition of Okada and its party as the casino’s legitimate operating partner.

The operator, on the other hand, claims that the SQAO granted to Okada would be recognized, but only in relation to Okada and not his co-conspirators.

As a result, Okada appears to be set to keep his position as a stockholder, director, Chairman, and CEO of the resort.

Bryon Yip, the former President of Okada Manila, has been reinstated as a result of a PAGCOR order.

Okada’s group claims PAGCOR has disobeyed Supreme Court orders and will take legal action.

The NSW Independent Casino Commission has issued a warning to operators.

The Independent Casino Commission of New South Wales has warned casinos in the state that they will face “very severe consequences” if they engage in misconduct.

The Commission, which went into effect today, has unprecedented powers to monitor casino activity and prosecute operators who engage in money laundering or other criminal activity.

Under new laws, casinos face fines of up to AU$100 million (US$67.8 million), and senior executives and board members will be personally liable for any wrongdoing they are aware of but fail to stop.

Philip Crawford, former Chairperson of the Independent Liquor & Gaming Authority (ILGA), will be the body’s Chief Commissioner.

Calls for a national gambling harm regulator in Australia

The Okada Manila has been reclaimed after Okada’s competitors impersonated casino employees and took control of the casino on Friday, September 2, 2022.

The Alliance for Gambling Reform’s Chief Advocate has called on the Federal Government and regional states to establish a national gambling harm regulator in Australia, following new research that found Australians lost more than AU$11.4 billion (US$7.74 billion) on poker machines in a single year.

Pokies losses decreased by around 17% in Victoria and New South Wales compared to pre-pandemic levels, owing primarily to pandemic closures and restrictions, but they increased in Queensland, South Australia, and Tasmania compared to 2018/19.

Over the 2021/22 fiscal year, gaming machine users in Victoria alone lost over AU$2.2 billion, with the average Victorian user losing around AU$2,800.

The figures, compiled by Monash University’s Gambling and Social Determinants Unit, include poker machines in pubs and clubs but not in casinos.

Have you missed a major gambling industry story in Asia? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with our Asia round-up.