Asian junket behemoth Suncity Group Holdings Limited has reportedly announced the completion of a deal that has seen it pay approximately $160 million in order to acquire a further 41.69% stake in Russian casino operator Summit Ascent Holdings Limited.
According to a report from Inside Asian Gaming, the Hong Kong-listed firm had previously held a 27.97% investment in the operator behind the Tigre de Cristal property but has now seen this interest rocket up to a dominant 69.66% stake. The source detailed that the most recent rights issue was approved by shareholders last month and means that Summit Ascent Holdings Limited is to henceforth be considered as a subsidiary with its financial statements consolidated into its parent’s larger results.
Also listed on the Hong Kong bourse, Summit Ascent Holdings Limited itself reportedly holds a 60% stake in the enterprise operating the 121-room Tigre de Cristal, Oriental Regent Limited, and was until 2018 controlled by the man now behind Macau casino giant Melco Resorts and Entertainment Limited, Lawrence Ho Yau Lung.
Alvin Chau Cheok Wa, Chairman for Suncity Group Holdings Limited, reportedly proclaimed that he was ‘thrilled to see a second up-and-running integrated resort’ brought under his company’s business umbrella despite a ‘suboptimal business environment’ triggered by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The entrepreneur moreover purportedly admitted to be ‘amazed by the determination’ of his firm to expand its presence across Asia and transform it into ‘a leading integrated resort operator and developer.’
Reportedly read a statement from Chau…
“As a businessman, I believe in operational track records. The resilience in the local Russian mass and slot businesses even in times of coronavirus, plus Suncity Group Holdings Limited’s entertainment operating expertise can blend together to become the perfect potion for future success. We will leverage on the proximity of Vladivostok to nearby tourism markets such as South Korea and Japan to roll out facilities tailored to these tourists. As more Suncity Group Holdings Limited integrated resorts are on their way, I am convinced that we will become the most iconic entertainment name amongst Asia’s integrated resort scene.”
Located in Russia’s casino-friendly Primorye Integrated Entertainment Resort zone, Tigre de Cristal reportedly opened some 30 miles north of the port city of Vladivostok in 2015 and features a large casino complete with in excess of 760 slots alongside almost 70 gaming tables. The Siberian venue is purportedly currently involved in revising plans for a $200 million expansion that is expected to double the size of its gaming floor while additionally adding a range of more family-friendly amenities such as an indoor beach club and convention facilities.