Universal Entertainment Corp, a Japanese gaming giant, has announced that one of its affiliated companies plans to develop a piece of land near the Okada Manila casino resort in Manila, Philippines. This news came as part of an update to the group’s 2023 business results forecast, which was released on Thursday.
The latest announcement reveals that Tiger Resort, Leisure and Entertainment Inc, a subsidiary of Universal Entertainment and the promoter of Okada Manila, has terminated part of its land lease agreements with Eagle I Landholdings Inc. Eagle I, an affiliate of Universal Entertainment, holds a 40% stake in the latter company.
According to the parent company, Eagle I plans to develop a 9.4-hectare (23.2-acre) land plot adjacent to Okada Manila, leading to the cancellation of a lease contract for a 6.1-hectare section of the land.
In March 2021, Universal Entertainment had ended a deal to sell the land near Okada Manila, with the total land sale value estimated at around PHP13.18 billion (US$242.8 million, at current exchange rates).
The Japanese firm had previously expressed its intention to pursue real estate development related to Okada Manila and collaborate with third parties to attract major hotel brands to the Philippine market.
Following the cancellation of the land lease, Universal Entertainment has increased its full-year net income forecast for 2023 to JPY20.00 billion (US$152.9 million) from JPY10.00 billion, citing cost savings from the terminated rental contracts and other factors related to the land lease.
For the full year of 2022, the Japanese conglomerate reported a net profit of nearly JPY11.51 billion, with group-wide sales increasing by 55.9% year-on-year to just under JPY141.00 billion. This is in contrast to a JPY19.05-billion loss in 2021.
In other news, Universal Entertainment announced earlier this week its intention to end a deal with 26 Capital Acquisition Corp, a U.S.-listed special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), which would result in the U.S. listing of the Okada Manila operator. 26 Capital stated to GGRAsia that it is pursuing legal action against four entities connected to Universal Entertainment for failing to fulfill their contractual obligations related to the deal.
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