Las Vegas Sands announced recently plans to build a casino resort complex in Yokohama. The investment is valued at $10 billion to start! In comments made by Las Vegas Sands chief operating officer, Rob Goldstein, during the company’s third-quarter earnings, he said, “$10 billion was the minimum investment for the Yokohama integrated resort,” Goldstein suggested that $12 billion was a possibility. He also added,
“We’re used to writing big checks, but all that money on one resort does make you stop and pinch yourself and ask whether you can get the returns that your shareholders deserve.”
The Las Vegas Sands decided to invest in Yokohama after the government of Japan released licences for three casino resort developments that combine casinos, shopping malls, theatres, hotels and theme parks. The licencing included the cities of Osaka and Tokyo as well, but the Las Vegas Sands decided to focus their attention on Yokohama.
It is noteworthy that MGM Resorts International earlier reaffirmed its plans to build an integrated report in Osaka in partnership with the Japanese Leasing company, Orix. Ed Bowers, chief executive of MGM Resorts Japan, said the MGM was pursuing an Osaka only state. The Japanese government will set up a regulatory body in January to handle the casino development and licencing process, as they are expected to select operator by early 2021. Moreover, the first three licenses will be awarded by 2022.
Integrated Resort Promotion Bill
Gambling in Japan is known to be tightly regulated as it’s only legal now to buy lottery tickets and to bet on horse races and a few motorsports. It has been estimated that the Japanese gambling industry is estimated at $40 billion a year, with a lot of potential for growth. The integrated resort promotion bill, which was approved and set in motion by Japanese legislatures will now allow such licencing. Passing the legislation has been repeatedly blocked in the past by the Liberal Democrats’ coalition block. Before approving the legislation, MGM Resorts International commented,
“We think there would be a tremendous amount of demand, and ultimately a public listing of these types of Japanese resorts would be very appealing.”
Brendan Bussmann of Las Vegas gaming and hospitality consultancy Global Market Advisors said, “Japan will likely have to create a similar organization that will need to use evidence-based research to establish the best practices for exclusion, awareness, research and resources across all forms of gaming, including pachinko,” Bussmann said.
“Technology can play a significant role through the training of staff, exclusionary programs, analytics, and research,” he added.