Macau licenses and discussion around whether or not they are enough for the market scale has been widely discussed by experts making projections for the upcoming years. Grant Govertsen, Head of Union Gaming recently stated that Suncity Group Holdings Ltd. has a significant advantage due to its operation at the moment which could guarantee it the seventh license for operation if the field decides to welcome another operator.
The independent research firm has been closely following Macau’s field for the past years and in this sense, Mr. Govertsen’s opinion came as a valuable insight into Suncity Group’s potential. The way he sees things, the local junket operator has bigger chances at claiming the seventh license for operation in comparison to Golden Dragon Group overseen by Macau businessman Chan Meng Kam, also bidding for an operation permit.
Vietnam Operation Boosts Junket Operator
According to the Managing Director, Suncity has a much greater potential for claiming a spot in the premium field, as it has quite the influence in the field. At the moment the junket operator is able to generate some 20 percent of the overall market in the gambling capital. When taking into account the remaining six operators, Suncity is able to outperform premium developers to the liking of Wynn Macau, Melco Resorts, and even SJM.
Furthermore, the junket operator’s development in Vietnam and Cambodia further elevates its image when it comes to a potential casino license. Vietnam-based $4-million integrated resort Hoiana which currently under construction is boosted by Suncity Group Holdings. August saw the purchase of a 34-percent stake in the resort which is set to launch operation in the foreseeable future, becoming the eight licensed casino location in Vietnam. Cambodia is also an area witnessing interest from Suncity.
Earlier this year the group inked a partnership with Golden Sun Sky Entertainment Co. Ltd. providing its services when it comes to the future operation of an integrated resort set to operate at Otres Beach, Sihanoukville.
The region is set to attract the attention of Chinese players willing to diversify their gaming options and experience the premium offerings of Cambodia’s gaming field. In turn, this defines the junket operator as integrated resort operator based in Macau, further amping the chances for a permit for development in the Special Administrative Region.
Rival License Bidder Has Good Chances Too
In the meantime, the other competitor for the potential license, Golden Dragon Group should not be underestimated. At the moment it oversees the operation of as many as 20 satellite gaming venues with plans of adding more casinos in the future. This happens via a service agreement system utilizing the gaming permits of Melco Resorts and SJM Holdings. Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd. also offers such an arrangement.
Claiming a spot in the seemingly limited gaming field of the booming international gambling hub is listed high on the agendas of many casino developers and operators around the globe. Operation in such a well-saturated market which witnessed a significant surge in its gaming revenue in the past months could definitely boost the performance of any casino entity willing to operate a casino resort in Macau. All six of its casino developers will have to renew their casino licensing in 2020 and 2022, potentially opening the door for more developers.
In a recent statement, another expert in the field, Former SJM Holdings Executive Director, Rui Cunha, stated that the introduction of new casino operators would negatively impact the field. He claimed that the existing six operators are sufficient for the market. Projected outcome of additional companies entering the field could range from individuals offering loans illegally, to attempts to get even and clear the ground by kidnappings and criminal activity.