Fresh from completing its takeover of the prestigious The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas property and American casino operator MGM Resorts International is reportedly rumored to be looking into the possibility of buying Asian competitor Genting Singapore Limited.
According to a report from Asia Gaming Brief, such a move from the Las Vegas-headquartered firm would come just as many Asian nations are beginning to emerge out from under a range of coronavirus-related travel and social distancing restrictions. The source detailed that Genting Singapore Limited is responsible for the giant Resorts World Sentosa development in Singapore but saw its aggregated revenues for the final six months of 2021 decline by 17% year-on-year to about $381.5 million as its associated gaming receipts crashed by 16% to sit just shy of $267.8 million.
MGM Resorts International is reportedly already thought to have held preliminary talks with Malaysian billionaire Lim Kok Thay about the possibility of buying Genting Singapore Limited. This 70-year-old figure purportedly holds a commanding 52.76% stake in the Singapore-listed casino operator while simultaneously serving as the Chief Executive Officer for larger compatriot Genting Malaysia Berhad.
Opened at the start of 2010, Resorts World Sentosa reportedly features some 1,800 rooms spread across seven hotels alongside a 160,000 sq ft casino offering a selection of 2,400 slots and more than 550 gaming tables. This harborside facility purportedly also holds a gambling license that is not set to expire until 2030 and was recently given government permission to expand its gaming floor by a further 5,381 sq ft so as to accommodate as many as 800 additional machines.
Asia Gaming Brief used a second report to disclose that such new speculation has prompted Genting Singapore Limited to request that the trading of its shares be temporarily suspended. The value of these individual interests has purportedly fallen by some 3.2% since the start of the year but experienced a rumor-fuelled boost of about 9% earlier today to be worth as much as $0.57.
However, Asia Gaming Brief additionally reported that any deal to purchase Genting Singapore Limited could be complicated by the fact that such an arrangement would need to be approved by the Singapore Casino Regulatory Authority as well as the small island nation’s Ministry of Home Affairs. A further significant impediment purportedly surrounds bonds guaranteed by Genting Malaysia Berhad that oblige the operator to remain as a subordinate and immediately pay back any outstanding debts should a change in majority ownership occur.
Nevertheless, a filing from American investment bank JPMorgan Chase and Company reportedly noted that such a transaction could offer Genting Singapore Limited a way into the highly-lucrative casino market of Macau. The organization purportedly went on to divulge that a partial stake sale to MGM Resorts International is now being seen as more likely than a full takeover although the whole process could well kick off something of a bidding war.