Not content to rest on their laurels, MGM Resorts is hoping to put together the best possible bid for the upcoming Japanese integrated resort (IR) licenses. In an April 29 conference call, CEO Jim Murren gave a clue to how they’ll do that.
GGRAsia reports the chairman discussed adding more Japanese firms to their bid, in addition to their existing partnership with financial services group Orix Ltd. He said about that relationship:
“We have been clear from day one that we believe it is essential to work with Japanese companies to develop a uniquely Japanese resort, and we have found a like-minded and natural partner in Orix.”
But then, teasing of what’s to come, he added, “We are forming a robust consortium that is anchored by, but not exclusive to, Orix.”
In addition to that announcement, Murren further explained the company’s strategy to win an IR license, while also trying to be the best possible partner for IR favorite Osaka. “Just recently, I was able to meet the mayor and the governor of Osaka, and was honoured to inform them that MGM has adopted an ‘Osaka first’ strategy, focusing our company’s considerable resources on creating a breath-taking resort to celebrate the entire Kansai region,” he said.
The company hasn’t just gone off name recognition in an attempt to win their license either. Murren noted MGM has had a team in Japan for six years to work on this project, and he doesn’t expect to lose on his investment.
Competition will be fierce though, and MGM isn’t the only U.S.-based operator investing heavily in a chance for a license. They will be up against Caesars, Hard Rock International and Las Vegas Sands, as well as world-wide companies like Galaxy Entertainment and Melco Resorts.
The company is going to be looking for some good news as well. Headlines have been bad recently, with profits falling and deep cuts to their labor force. MGM has said those cuts are part of a re-invention, but with net-income falling, something will need to change to brighten MGM’s story, and an Osaka IR result could be it.