The gaming unit of Philippine casino investor Udenna Development Corp. has formally joined the Philippine Stock Exchange through a backdoor listing.
According to The Philippine Daily Inquirer, Udenna will use the firm’s recently acquired publicly-listed Philippine H2O Ventures (PHV) as the backdoor-listing vehicle for its gaming and tourism business.
PHV has reportedly secured the approval of its shareholders to change its name to PH Resorts Group Holdings, Inc. (PRGHI) and change the company’s purpose from water utility business to hotel and/or gaming and entertainment business.
PRGHI shareholders also gave the go-signal to increase the company’s authorized capital stock from PHP500 million (US$9.31 million) to PHP8 billion ($149.01 million). PRGHI’s portfolio includes two integrated resort and casino projects in the Philippine provinces of Cebu and Pampanga.
Following the backdoor listing, shareholders elected Udenna founder and Chairman Dennis Uy and Raymundo Martin Escalona as PRGHI’s chairman and president, respectively. Joining the company’s board are Cherylyn Uy (treasurer); and Lara Lorenzana (chief financial officer). Eric Recto and William Yap were appointed independent directors.
In a statement, Uy assured its investors of “a new era of growth” as the company delves deeper into the tourism sector.
“At the same time, we look forward to supporting the development of the tourism sector, which serves as one of our economy’s growth pillars,” Uy said, according to the news outlet.
Last year, Udenna announced plans to develop a 12.5-hectare, beachfront casino resort featuring iconic modern buildings that are surrounded by lush greens and infinity pools. The planned casino, located south of Manila, will also have a skydiving center on a pier, a retail complex, a convention center, luxury hotels and villas, specialty dining options, private residences and condominium-hotels.
Unlike other integrated resorts, Udenna’s project is hoping to capture the “huge Korean market” that frequently go in Mactan. They also hope to attract Singaporeans and Chinese VIP and premium mass market gamblers, as well as local players.
The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) is grooming the country’s Visayas region as the next gambling destination, as Manila becomes too congested to host another integrated resort project.