Francis Lui confident about Japan gaming license


Deputy chairman of casino operator Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd, Francis Lui Yiu Tung, is confident that the company can seize a chance to establish a foothold in the Japanese gaming market.
In an interview with Hong Kong Economic Times, published yesterday, the company executive said Galaxy Entertainment had studied possible gaming developments in Tokyo and Osaka, however consolidated plans will need to wait for the country’s confirmation of its implementation timetable.
Last month, the gaming corporation announced its interest in developing the Japanese market for the first time, following the country legalising gaming operations in December 2016.
Asked by the news outlet whether the company is able to invest as much as its Macau market rival Las Vegas Sands Corp. – whose boss Sheldon Adelson expressed a desire to invest some US$100 million (MOP800 million) in a Japan casino – Mr. Lui indicated his company could afford a huge investment as well, given its strong balance sheet and cash-in-hand amounting to some HK$16 billion.
“The Lui family’s long-term development history in the country gives us advantages. We’re very confident,” the report quoted the deputy chairman as saying.
During the company’s annual results presentation last month, Mr. Lui’s father and chairman of the company, Lui Che Woo, said the group is “well positioned to penetrate into [Japan’s] gaming market” given its long-standing relationship with Japanese partners such as Hotel Okura.
In addition to Galaxy Entertainment and Las Vegas Sands, other gaming operators in the city, or their parent companies – with the exception of SJM Holdings Ltd- have all expressed their interest in securing a gaming license in Japan. In particular, the chairman of Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd, Lawrence Ho Yau Lung said last month: “We’ll absolutely spend whatever we need to win [a license].”