In Macau and local casino operator SJM Holdings Limited has reportedly announced that it will be moving approximately 1,000 employees from its iconic Casino Grand Lisboa to work in its soon-to-open Grand Lisboa Palace counterpart.

According to a report from Inside Asian Gaming, the Hong Kong-listed firm made the revelation as part of an official Tuesday filing concerning its first-quarter financial results while moreover detailing that the coming facility is now almost entirely completed and remains on track to begin welcoming guests during the second half of the year.

Impressive intent:

SJM Holdings Limited is responsible for some 20 gambling-friendly venues spread across Macau and began work on the 2,000-room Grand Lisboa Palace in February of 2014 so as to be better able to compete with nearby properties such as the $3.2 billion Studio City Macau from rival Melco Resorts and Entertainment Limited. The operator explained that the new $5 billion development is set to feature a trio of five-star hotels branded under the Grand Lisboa Palace, Palazzo Versace and Karl Lagerfeld monikers alongside conference facilities, a 290,000 sq ft casino and a range of shops and restaurants.

Easing expenditures:

Inside Asian Gaming reported that SJM Holdings Limited additionally used the financial update to proclaim that relocating workers to the Grand Lisboa Palace will allow it to reduce costs at the 13-year-old Casino Grand Lisboa where it has been ‘warehousing employees’. The firm purportedly also revealed that it has so far spent slightly over $4.2 billion on the Cotai Strip project but does not envisage having to expend the remainder of its budget until after the venue officially premieres.

Coronavirus contingencies:

In related news SJM Holdings Limited has responded to the ongoing coronavirus-related slowdown of the Macau gambling market by requesting bank waivers on its financial covenants for up to six quarters. However, the investments firm purportedly pronounced that the casino behemoth ‘does not plan on cutting any local staff or reducing compensation at this point’ as it remains ‘very optimistic’ that the enclave will be able to ‘get back to its prior levels.

Reportedly read a statement from Sanford C Bernstein and Company…

“Social distancing rules will likely stay for some time. SJM Holdings Limited is not too concerned as the Casino Grand Lisboa has enough space to accommodate any configurations needed.”