Osaka Concedes Integrated Resort Time Line a Mystery, No Target Date for Casino Opening
Osaka, one of the leading candidate cities for one of Japan’s three casinos, says there is no set time line for the development and opening of the integrated resort (IR).
When Japan’s National Diet passed its Basic Policy on commercial gambling in 2019, officials in Osaka hoped to have a casino resort up and running in time for the city’s hosting of the 2025 World Expo. 2020 and the COVID-19 global pandemic impeded those ambitions.
Osaka revised its IR time line last year, with a new expectation that the resort would open sometime around 2027 or 2028. But now, leaders in Japan’s third-most populated city say it’s unknown when such a property might be completed.
In the prefecture and city’s latest implementation policy, there is no set target date for an IR opening.
COVID Delaying Japan IRs
Osaka is one of four cities that has publicly announced its IR candidacy. The others are Yokohama, Wakayama, and Nagasaki. Tokyo remains on the sidelines, but is considering an entry.
MGM Resorts is the front-runner to be selected by Osaka as its preferred partner. The Las Vegas-headquartered casino operator has formed a local consortium with ORIX, a financial services firm based in Japan.
During MGM’s 2020 full-year earnings call with investors and analysts this week, MGM CEO Bill Hornbuckle confirmed that COVID-19 has greatly interrupted the company’s development plans in Japan.
“We’re a believer in Japan. We’ve spent a lot of time and energy becoming the sole one standing at the gate, if you will, in Osaka,” Hornbuckle said in answering a question regarding the company’s ongoing interest in the Asian country.
We haven’t had our people on the ground there for a better part of nine months. So, it’s going to take some time to rebound. But we have the intent, and I believe that the government still has the same intent of moving forward,” he added.
Hornbuckle expected Osaka’s announcement that there is no longer a concrete time line for the IR. He explained that Osaka has yet to inform MGM regarding the minimum standards and mandatory requirements of IR submissions.
“I think that will be coming out within the next several weeks,” Hornbuckle concluded.
Entain Fold Improves Osaka Odds
MGM Resorts kicked off the new year by going after Entain, the British sports betting and gaming behemoth formerly known as GVC Holdings. MGM offered 0.6 shares of its company for each share of Entain. But the all-equity bid, valued at more than $11 billion, was rejected.
MGM decided not to submit a higher offer. That was welcomed news among Osaka officials, as it allows MGM to be better suited to stay committed to its plans in Japan.
Gaming analysts at Sanford C. Bernstein said acquiring Entain would have likely reduced “MGM’s appetite for a large-scale Japan development.”
The post Osaka Concedes Integrated Resort Time Line a Mystery, No Target Date for Casino Opening appeared first on Casino.org.
Former Washington Redskins’ TE Jordan Reed is Retiring from Playing in NFL
On Tuesday, April 20th, 2021 the former tight end of the Washington Redskins and the…
Richmond eliminates Bally’s $650M resort casino proposal; only two remain on short list
In Virginia, after narrowing the field of bidders for a resort casino down to three…
Resorts World Las Vegas sets official opening date for June 24
After more than seven years of work and Genting Malaysia Berhad has reportedly announced that…
Aldon Smith Agrees to a 1 Year Contract with the Seattle Seahawks
On Thursday, April 15th, 2021 the Seattle Seahawks have announced that they have decided to…
Stakelogic agrees new “breakthrough deal” with PokerStars for Spain debut
In a move that realizes its Spanish market debut, Stakelogic has partnered with leading online…
King’s Casino owner sues Facebook for $24m after fake online advertisements arise
King’s Casino in Rozvadov is a popular spot for poker players, with the card room…