Okada, Gokongwei groups sign pact to develop gaming hub in Pagcor City

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11:51 PM December 12th, 2012

By: Doris C. Dumlao, December 12th, 2012 11:51 PM

MANILA, Philippines—Amid raging bribery allegations, the Okada group has struck a deal with the Gokongwei group on a Philippine gaming and real estate partnership in the government’s upcoming gaming hub Pagcor City.

Okada’s Universal Entertainment and Robinsons Land Corp. separately announced late Wednesday the signing of a basic agreement that would allow the latter to acquire a minority stake in its wholly owned Tiger Resorts, Leisure and Entertainment Inc. At the same time, RLC will acquire a majority stake in Eagle I Land Holdings Inc., the landowner of the project site.

RLC will be responsible for developing the commercial facilities, a budget hotel and residential facilities in the project. The final agreement shall be concluded by Jan. 31, 2013, according to the statement.

“This entry of the JG Summit in the gaming space only shows that the Philippines will be among the leading players in tourism gaming space in the region. We expect more interest in the gaming sector over the next couple of years,” said Paul Joseph Garcia, senior vice president and head of Odyssey Funds at Bank of the Philippine Islands.

With other big projects pursued by Bloomberry and the Melco group in partnership with Belle Corp., Garcia said the Philippines would soon “be a fierce player” in the regional tourism gaming space.

Over the last few years, Singapore and Macau have emerged as formidable gaming hubs in the region.

The announcement did not say how much stake RLC will get in the gaming operations.

Universal Entertainment said the casino resort being developed by the Group would be called “Manila Bay Resorts.” Besides a world-class casino, it said the major casino resort complex would have luxurious hotels, classy restaurants, commercial facilities, a budget hotel, residences, Vegas-style water fountains and an enormous indoor pool with real sand beach covered by a huge glass dome.

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