MBS eyeing $5b of 49% stake in Shoppes mall

I refer to the article “MBS parent firm eyeing $5b sale of 49% stake in its Shoppes mall” (Straits Times, Jan 28).

It states that “Marina Bay Sands (MBS) is looking to sell 49 per cent of its stake in the plush Shoppes mall at a price that could make it the most expensive retail property in the world.

Govt must approve

Las Vegas Sands, the parent company of MBS, wants US$3 billion to US$3.5 billion (S$4.3 billion to S$5 billion) for the stake, but it needs the green light from the Singapore Government before a sale can take place.

VIP gaming revenue, which accounted for about 42 per cent of total gaming turnover, fell 18.4 per cent to US$8.26 billion in the three months to Dec 31.”

In this connection, according to the article “Profit rebound for MBS in 3rd quarter” (Straits Times, Nov 5) – “MBS’ mass table revenue, which accounted for 38 per cent of the total gaming turnover, fell 8.1 per cent to US$985 million.

But slot machines, which have a greater patronisation rate by local players than mass or VIP tables, fared slightly better. Slots, which accounted for around 20 per cent of the total gaming revenue, gained 1.4 per cent to US$3.46 billion in the third quarter.”

S$3.3b gaming revenue?

So, looking at these numbers – does it mean that the gaming revenue (Las Vegas Sands corporation’s annual report) in a year is about US$2.3 (S$3.29) billion?

RWS (Genting): S$1.75 gaming revenue? 

According to Genting Singapore’s 2015 annual report – its revenue from gaming operations was S$1.75 billion.

2 casinos S$5b gaming revenue?

So, does it mean that the combines gaming revenue of the two casinos is about S$5 billion (S$3.29 + S$1.75) a year?

How much lost by residents?

How much of this money is money lost by locals (Singaporeans and permanent residents (PRs)) and the 1.4 million foreign workers in Singapore?

Can sell after 10 years?

As to “The agreement that allowed US gaming giant Las Vegas Sands to build the resort and casino stated that the company cannot sell any part of the 800,000 sq ft mall for at least 10 years, and only then after official approval.

Genting Singapore’s Resorts World Sentosa complex operates under similar conditions.

10 years from 2010?

The agreements also gave the two companies a 10-year period where they would be the exclusive operators here, giving them a head start in recouping the billions of dollars in construction costs. The 10-year period expires in March” – since MBS began operations on 27 April 2010 – shouldn’t the end of the 10-year period be 27 April 2020?

Sell to invest in Japan’s casino?

“The sale proceeds could be used in the company’s next investment in Japan or South Korea, he added.

Japan recently approved casino gaming within integrated resorts.”


Leong Sze Hian

A.S.S. Contributor

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