Imperial Pacific earns Fitch downgrade

Fitch Ratings has downgraded its rating for Hong Kong-listed Imperial Pacific International Holdings Limited, after concerns it has still not yet secured sufficient long-term funding for the construction of its casino and resort.

“Fitch believes IPI is on target to meet its construction deadline, but longer-term capex funding for the casino and hotel resort is not yet in place…. Failure to secure funding for the completion of both construction phases may further pressure IPI's liquidity,” noted the ratings agency on Wednesday.

The downgrade also “reflects the company's need to fund advances to customers and bear customers' credit risk due to the lack of licensed junket operators in Saipan,” added Fitch.

“So far only one junket has been licensed by the Commonwealth Casino Commission of Saipan. Thus, IPI has been operating its VIP business through third-party introductions and internal marketing, with IPI granting credit directly to VIP customers who are partly backed by guarantors. Fitch believes IPI's receivable days have expanded well beyond 100 days in view of the strong VIP rolling chips volume in the past six months. Operating cash generation is likely to be low, despite strong revenue growth.”

The ratings agency has lowered the casino operator’s Long-Term Foreign-Currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) to ‘CCC’, down from the ‘B(EXP)’ expected rating assigned in September 2016.

It has also downgraded the casino resort operator's proposed US dollar senior secured note issue to an expected 'B-(EXP)' rating, from 'BB-(EXP)'.

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Imperial Pacific Resort Hotel has announced the opening of DÁ Lounge, the hotel’s new cocktail lounge as the icon of the entire property.

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The members of an online gambling gang were reportedly rounded up and returned to China from Fiji after Beijing sent a team to the island to investigate, according to media reports.

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Imperial Pacific International Holdings Ltd has announced amendments to its casino license agreement regarding timings for its initial gaming facility, as well as phase one and two integrated resorts.

Pacific IslandsMonday, Jul 24, 2017

Imperial Pacific International says it expects to complete the construction of its villas by January of next year, while 374 hotel rooms are expected to complete in August 2018.

Pacific IslandsWednesday, Jul 19, 2017

The CNMI Senate has formed a new committee to address gaming concerns on the island.

Pacific IslandsSunday, Jul 02, 2017

Imperial Pacific’s integrated casino resort in Garapan is set to open within the next two weeks.

Pacific IslandsThursday, Jun 29, 2017

Imperial Pacific International Holdings, operator of the Saipan casino resort, has announced new workforce rules banning any individuals who are not authorized to enter the construction site.