Japan is expected to make huge strides toward the launch of its integrated resort (IR) industry early in 2020 and there is an unending supply of operators hoping to join the space. In the end, only three will be selected in the first round and the competition is going to be fierce. While most casino operators are zeroing in on a single location, such as Osaka or Yokohama, Galaxy Entertainment Group is willing to take a broader approach in an effort to make itself more attractive once the selection process begins.
Galaxy, like most operators, has boots on the ground now and they are actively promoting the company’s strengths. They’re highlighting Galaxy’s MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions) experience, which is reflected in the upcoming launch of the Galaxy Arena and Galaxy International Convention Center (GICC) at its Galaxy Macau property. At a press event yesterday in Osaka, ahead of the start of the IR Gaming Expo 2019 that starts today, Galaxy said that the GICC is the “most iconic and advanced integrated MICE destination when it opens in Macau in the first half of 2021” in Asia.
Galaxy chairman Dr. Lui Che Woo added, ‘‘We are honored to introduce state of the art MICE and Arena facilities to attract new visitors and complement the Macau Government’s vision of diversifying the economy and developing Macau into a World Center of Tourism and Leisure.”
In order to remain flexible, Galaxy isn’t concentrating on only one area. It is willing to submit response to requests for proposals from almost any region, although its particular interest lies in Osaka and Yokohama.
There’s also the chance that Galaxy would launch in both, if given the opportunity. A reporter asked Galaxy Japan Chief Operating Officer Ted Chan if it would consider such an endeavor, and he replied, “The likelihood is low but I would love to be in two cities. We are an IR operator that can handle multiple trillion-scale [Japanese Yen] projects. We are the fastest growing IR operator. We are confident that we can build a high-quality facility that will meet the needs of the Japanese government.”
That confidence stems from strong financial health. The casino giant reported net profit last year of $1.748 billion and Adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) of $2.19 billion. It currently holds cash and liquid investments of around $5.93 billion and could launch one, or more IRs in Japan without leveraging its bank accounts.