Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) head honcho Dana White’s latest wish will come true “very soon” when the mixed martial arts (MMA) brand puts on a show in Macau for the first time. White has been hankering after the lucrative Chinese market for some time and has announced MMAcau’s first glimpse of the octagon will be at the Venetian Macau’s rebranded CotaiArena. It’s at such an early stage that now bouts have even been planned but White was mightily excited when talking to MMAjunkie.com. “It will happen this year,” White said. “We’re this close. We are going to do a fight in China.”
Melco Crown Entertainment submitted a formal request to include a casino business at its new Cotai location late last year. Bewilderment had greeted comments from secretary for economy and finance Francis Tam Pak Yuen when he stated no casino had been included on the original plans and it looks to have forced their hand. The source was quoted by Portuguese language daily Jornal Tribuna de Macau that said the application was lodged in early December. Analysts and the company themselves have made some lofty projections pertaining to Melco Crown having the most to gain from all Cotai expansion. Melco and CEO Laurence Ho have exuded confidence on the Studio City casino issue on a number of occasions and it certainly looks like a firm with a lot to gain.
SJM Holdings has presented a draft of its own plans on the Cotai strip. CEO Ambrose So Shu Fai admitted to Hoje Macay the first phase has been submitted to the government and could be open inside the next two years. It will have both gaming and non-gaming areas with the cost likely to hit MOP15 billion (US$1.9 billion). So added it’ll be financed using money from the firm’s existing properties.