Things are going well for Imperial Pacific International Holdings Ltd.’s venture in Saipan, at least for the first quarter of the year.
The Hong Kong-listed firm’s temporary casino on the Pacific Island, which forms part of the U.S. Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, posted an unaudited overall gross gaming revenue (GGR) of US$186.6 million in the first three months of 2016.
This means the Saipan casino raked in an average of US$62.2 million monthly, up by 36 percent compared to the monthly average in November and December of 2015. VIP revenue in the first quarter of 2016 reached US$176.9 million, while mass table gaming segment contributed US$8 million and slot machines posted US$1.8 million.
In its filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, Imperial Pacific also noted that VIP table gaming rolling chip turnover for the first quarter was US$6.1 billion or about US$2 billion monthly, representing a 30 percent increase compared to the monthly average of US$1.6 billion in November and December last year.
“We continue to benefit from the trend of customers exploring alternative gaming venues in the region, and believe that Saipan is a compelling destination, a tropical island within easy reach of China, Korea and Japan… [It is also] a U.S. jurisdiction with visa-on-arrival entry for visitors,” Imperial Pacific CEO Mark Brown said in a statement.
Imperial Pacific officially opened its temporary casino on the island in November, complete with 12 VIP gaming tables, 34 mass tables and 106 electronic gaming machines. The firm’s casino license is held via its local subsidiary, Best Sunshine International Ltd.
Last year, the Asian VIP gaming investor reported an improved revenue compared to 2014, partly due to the opening of the temporary casino on Saipan. Imperial Pacific said it will soon start building its permanent gaming venue on the island, the Grand Mariana Casino and Hotel Resort in Garapan.
So far, the firm has already shelled out US$60 million on design, consulting, construction material and labor related to the Grand Mariana project. Imperial Pacific previously said it will spend up to US$7.1 billion for the casino project, but now that China’s VIPs—the company’s blood source—have developed anemia, who knows what Imperial Pacific’s final plans or budget will look like.