For the second time since November, Hong Kong-based businessman, Lawrence Ho Yau Lung, has reportedly increased his stake in Melco Resorts and Entertainment Limited, (NASDAQ: MLCO).

According to GGRAsia reporting on a Thursday filing (pdf) to Nasdaq by the Asian firm, the billionaire’s equity participation, along with that of the entities controlled by either him or his family, has swelled to 55.8%.

Stake increase:

In November 2018, it was announced that Ho had increased his stake in the developer, owner and operator of casino gaming and entertainment casino and resort facilities in Asia to 54.6%, up from the 51.06% he and his interests held as of April 2018, according to the company’s annual report filed during the same month.

Personal and indirect holdings:

Data contained in Thursday’s filing further showed that Ho, who himself holds shares in Melco Resorts in addition to shares held indirectly through his interests in parent firm, Melco International Development Ltd, has increased his personal investment in the company by some 1.6 million shares, to nearly 13.25 million shares, according to the news agency.

The man known as a “game changer” in the Asian gambling industry, benefited his overall controlling position in the firm from an ongoing US$500,000,000 share repurchase program Melco resorts announced in November last year.

Repurchase plan:

Since that time, the company has repurchased some 10 million of its U.S. depository shares, each of which is equivalent to three shares in Melco.

As of Thursday, February 21, 2019, in total, Ho and interests owned  836,563,396 ordinary shares of Melco International, which represents roughly 55.05% of the firm’s outstanding ordinary shares.

Employee salary hike:

Earlier this month, Melco Resorts announced that that effective from April 1, 2019, eligible employees salary will be increased by a range of between 2.5% and 7.5% and that a pay hike of 2.5% will be given to all eligible, full-time non-management employees who earn a monthly “base salary (including tips)” of more than MOP13,000 (US$1616.8). And those whose monthly base salary (including tips) is less than or equal to MOP13,000 will receive a pay hike of MOP600 ($US74per month).

The announcement came after a January 10 announcement that eligible non-management employees would be awarded a “one-month discretionary bonus” prior to the Chinese New Year.

Melco was reportedly the first of Macau‘s half-dozen casino operators to announce publicly a staff bonus this year.

Company benefitting:

Melco is responsible for Studio City Macau and City of Dreams Macau integrated casino resorts, as well as the Altira Macau and City of Dreams Manila integrated casino resorts and Macau’s Mocha Clubs chain of electronic gaming machine parlors.

On Tuesday, the firm announced a 57.7% year-on-year profit swell for the fourth quarter of 2018.