Kangwon Land

    Kangwon Land Casino is Korea’s first ever casino to allow the admission of Koreans. It was established under the ‘Special law regarding support for the development of abandoned mine areas,’ which was passed in 1995 with the purpose of resuscitating the economy of such abandoned mine areas. Gangwon Land is a hotel resort with 199 rooms at present, priding over its superior casino facilities with 960 slot machines and 100 tables. Gangwon Land Casino has skilled dealers and serves free beverages to players.


    Andy Jeon Jongsun

    Deputy General Manager, EGM business team

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    Kangwon Land said it has appointed Lee Sam-Geol, a former vice minister in the Ministry of the Interior and Safety as its new CEO.

    Lee Sam-Geol assumes post as Kangwon Land CEO

    Former Second Vice Minister of Public Administration and Security Lee Sam-Geol has been approved by shareholders to assume the post of CEO of Kangwon Land.

    Kangwon Land launches committee to promote gender equality

    Kangwon Land has launched a committee to promote gender equality, including the formation of policy recommendations on creating a gender-equal culture and work environment, supporting training for female talent development, preventing of sexual harassment and sexual violence, improving the evaluation system regarding maternity leave, and constructing a workplace daycare center.

    KL Saberi slots headed for North American market

    Kangwon Land has signed an agreement with game developer Flysher which will see KL Saberi brand slots enter the North American market.

    Kangwon Land provides grant to local social welfare facilities

    The Kangwon Land Welfare Foundation announced that it provided KRW630 million (US$561,000) for the operation of social welfare facilities and group programs in Gangwon Province as part of the “Welfare Infrastructure Revitalization Project in 2021.”

    Record jackpot hit at Kangwon Land slot machine

    A resident of the Seoul metropolitan area hit a record jackpot while playing the slots at Kangwon Land, winning KRW987 million (US$878,000).

    Lee Sam-Geol tapped to become next Kangwon Land CEO

    The board of directors of state-run Kangwon Land has selected Lee Sam-Geol, currently the second vice minister of the Ministry of Public Administration and Security, to become the casino resort’s next CEO. This proposal will be submitted to shareholders in the coming weeks.

    Kangwon Land Saberi games coming to online and mobile platforms

    Neowiz Games, an online game publisher in South Korea, has signed a content agreement with Kangwon Land to use its KL Saberi brand for various online and mobile games.

    Kangwon Land fails to meet youth employment obligations

    A survey has found that Kangwon Land was among 67 public institutions that failed to fully comply with the youth employment obligation system, arguably in part due to challenges associated with the Covid pandemic.

    Problem gambling rates near Kangwon Land seen as high

    Concerns are being raised about what may be higher rates of gambling addiction found in some local populations who live near Kangwon Land.
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    Kangwon Land’s license extended to 2045

    The South Korean government is moving forward with a plan to extend state-backed casino resort Kangwon Land operating license for a further twenty years to 2045.

    Kangwon Land to publish white paper on Covid response

    Kangwon Land has let it be known that it will be publishing a 360-page white paper outlining its response to the Covid-19 pandemic with an eye to providing lessons learned in a crisis situation.

    Kangwon Land opens; GKL remains closed

    The two big state-run gambling firms, Kangwon Land and Grand Korea Leisure, have just taken divergent paths on the Covid-19 crisis.
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    Kangwon Land installs new KL Saberi slots

    Kangwon Land on Tuesday installed about a hundred new slot machines on its gaming floor from its own brand manufacturer, KL Saberi, including nine new titles.

    Covid case confirmed at Kangwon Land ski resort

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    Kangwon Land woes put largest shareholder in financial jeopardy

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    Covid resurgence brings cold winter to South Korean gaming

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    Pandemic disrupts Kangwon Land’s slot machine business

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    Covid resurgence forces Kangwon Land to close again

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    Kangwon Land delays opening another week to June 22

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    Kangwon Land reopening pushed back to June 15

    Kangwon Land has once again delayed its reopening plans due to lingering Covid-19 infection concerns, this time delaying the scheduled June 4 reopening to June 15. Since operations at Kangwon Land were originally suspended on February 23, the period of the closure was repeatedly extended on a more-or-less weekly basis. The latest decision for delay […]

    Surge in Covid cases pushes Kangwon Land reopening back to June 4

    Although Kangwon Land was set for a limited reopening this week, a sudden surge of new Covid-19 cases in South Korea induced the firm to announce yet another delay, this time until June 4. The decision was made after an emergency meeting of company executives. After appearing to have largely contained Covid-19 in the country, […]
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    Kangwon Land casino limited reopening on May 28

    Kangwon Land has announced that its casino facilities will reopen this Thursday, May 28, as one of South Korea’s major brick-and-mortar gaming companies cautiously returns to operations. A maximum of 1,200 customers will be allowed to enter the casino on a daily basis, which is only about 17 percent of pre-pandemic levels. This is deemed […]
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    Kangwon Land reports $129 million loss in 20Q1

    Kangwon Land has reported a sharp KRW156.2 billion (US$129 million) loss in 20Q1, driven by the global Covid-19 crisis. Sales fell 37.5 percent to KRW263.6 billion. Operations at Kangwon Land were suspended on February 23, and the period of the closure was repeatedly extended until this week in line with continuing concerns about the spread […]

    Kangwon Land closure extended to May 11

    Kangwon Land, South Korea’s only casino open to the local people, has announced that it will extend its Covid-19 closure yet again, this time for a further week until May 11 at 6 am. The decision was made at a meeting held at the company headquarters on April 29. Operations at Kangwon Land were originally […]

    Kangwon Land CEO supports local flower farmers

    Kangwon Land CEO Moon Tae-Gon participated on Tuesday in the “Flower Bucket Challenge,” an initiative aimed at supporting local flower farmers during the Covid-19 downturn. As his part in the initiative, Moon delivered a flower basket to Lee Dong-Ik, the head of the Eastern Regional Forest Service, saying, “ Let’s work together to preserve the […]
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    Kangwon Land closure extended to May 4

    Kangwon Land, Korea’s only casino open to the local people, has announced that it will extend its Covid-19 closure yet again, this time until May 4 at 6 am. Operations at Kangwon Land were originally suspended on February 23, and the period of the closure has been repeatedly extended in line with continuing concerns about […]
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    Kangwon Land and Grand Korea Leisure closures extended to April 20

    Kangwon Land, the only casino in South Korea to allow locals to gamble, has again extended the closure of the property, this time until April 20th.

    Korean operators calculating business suspension losses

    With the decision to suspend business operations until April 6, some South Korean operators have begun to release estimates of the losses they are facing as a result. Grand Korea Leisure, which operates three foreigner-only casinos in Seoul and Busan, estimates a sales loss of KRW17.5 billion (US$14.4 million) as a result of its two-week […]

    South Korean casinos to suspend operations over Covid-19 concerns

    All of South Korea’s major casino firms have now announced suspensions of operations as a measure to combat the spread of Covid-19. State-run casino operator Grand Korea Leisure, which operates three foreigner-only casinos in Seoul and Busan, has stated that it will close its facilities from this Tuesday until April 6. Paradise Co. also revealed […]

    Kangwon Land extends closure yet again to March 23

    Kangwon Land has announced that it will yet again extend its closure until March 23 over concerns about the spread of Covid-19 infection in South Korea. Kangwon Land originally suspended operations on February 23, but the period of closure has been repeatedly extended. As of Monday morning, there were 8,162 confirmed cases in the country […]

    Korean gaming stocks hammered by Covid-19

    South Korea’s gaming companies have all seen their stock prices hammered by the Covid-19 crisis, though with varying intensity. Paradise Co. was one of Monday’s biggest losers on the Kosdaq Stock Market, losing 7.8 percent of its value in a single day. Since the beginning of the year it has fallen from 20,150 to 15,350, […]

    Kangwon Land extends Covid-19 closure another week to March 15

    Kangwon Land has announced that it will once again extend its closure until March 15 over concerns about the spread of Covid-19 infection in South Korea. Kangwon Land originally suspended operations on February 23, but the period of closure has been repeatedly extended as the Covid-19 information became increasingly dire. As of Sunday evening, there […]

    Kangwon Land further extends closure until March 9

    Kangwon Land announced last Friday that it would remain closed until March 9 over concerns about the spread of Covid-19 infection in South Korea. Kangwon Land originally suspended operations on February 23, but the period of closure has been repeatedly extended as the Covid-19 information became increasingly dire. As of Sunday evening, there were 3,526 […]

    Kangwon Land extends casino closure to Feb 29

    Kangwon Land has further extended the closure of its casino resort – to 6 am Saturday (February 29). The casino operator originally planned to only close for 24 hours on Sunday, but later extended this to Wednesday, February 26.  Kangwon Land said the shutdown was put in place to help the country curb the spread […]

    Kangwon Land closes for 24 hours as coronavirus cases surge

    Kangwon Land has announced the closure of its casino for 24 hours due to the coronavirus.  Management did not elaborate on the reasons for the closure other than the “nationwide spread of COVID-19.”  On Sunday, South Korea reported 169 new cases of coronavirus and four new deaths – bringing the total number of infected to […]
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    Kangwon Land reports 12.7 percent gain in profitability for 2019

    Kangwon Land, the casino and resort company based in Gangwon Province that uniquely allows locals to gamble, reported a full-year profit in 2019 up 12.7 percent. With sales at KRW1.52 trillion (about US$1.28 billion), which was up 5.7 percent year-on-year, combined with lower costs, net profits for the year came in at KRW335 billion (about […]

    South Korea’s casino operators see varying results in Q3

    South Korea’s only locals-permitted casino, Kangwon Land, reported positive results in 19Q3, driven by an uptick in sales, though its foreigner-only peers saw mixed results.  According to local reports, Kangwon Land’s third-quarter net profit reached KRW 128.6 billion (US$111 million), increasing 37.9 percent. Operating profit for the period was KRW139.2 billion, up 12.3 percent year-on-year. […]
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    Korea’s foreigner-only casinos post strong gains in 2018

    South Korea’s foreigner-only casinos posted strong revenue growth in 2018, gaining 34 percent over the prior year, according to figures from the country’s National Gambling Control Commission.

    Kangwon Land plans expansion with home-grown slots

    South Korean casino operator Kangwon Land has developed its own range of slot machines and is planning to distribute its products globally, beginning with the Philippines.

    Mixed results for Korea’s casino operators in 19Q1

    South Korea’s casino operators saw mixed results in the first quarter of 2019, with some, such as Kangwon Land, reporting a 13.3 percent rise in net profit, while others, such as Grand Korea Leisure, reporting a halving of net profit in the same quarter. Kangwon Land, known as Korea’s only locals-permitted casino was able to […]

    Another Kangwon former CEO accused of corruption

    Former head of Kangwon Land, Ham Seung-hee, has been accused of corruption, after unionized employees of the casino reported him for using millions of dollars worth of company funds for his own personal use, Korea Herald reports. Ham, who was once a well-known prosecutor and lawmaker, and head of the country’s only locals-permitted land-based casino, […]

    Two lawmakers indicted in Kangwon Land scandal

    Two lawmakers from the main opposition party in South Korea have been indicted in connection with a job placement scandal at Kangwon Land, local media reports.

    GKL bottom of the class in government review

    Grand Korea Leisure came out with the lowest possible rating in an annual government evaluation of management performance, local media reported.

    South Korea’s casino revenue fell 5.9 percent in 2017

    Turnover at South Korea’s casinos fell 5.9 percent in 2017, after a ban on tour groups by China in March hit visitation.

    Kangwon Land profit falls 30.3 percent in 18Q1

    Kangwon Land, South Korea’s only locals-permitted casino, reported a 30.3 percent decrease in profit for the first quarter of 2018. Net profit fell to KRW 90.4 billion (US$84.8 million), while total sales, including non-gaming revenue, fell 7.5 percent to KRW 385 billion. The decrease in profit was partly attributed to a decline in its gaming […]

    Government fires illegal Kangwon Land workers

    The South Korean government has decided to fire all 226 employees of Kangwon Land who were found to have obtained their jobs through nepotism. “President Moon Jae-in today ordered the government to take swift and thorough measures against employment-related corruption at public organizations, best known by the Kangwon Land case,” Yonhap News cited Cheong Wa […]

    Former ministry official tangled in Kangwon scandal

    South Korea’s Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism office was raided on Saturday after allegations emerged that a former tourism ministry official had used his influence to secure jobs for four of his family members at Kangwon Land. Kangwon Land is the only casino in South Korea that allows locals to gamble, which has been […]

    Arrest warrant issued to former Kangwon Land CEO

    The former CEO of Kangwon Land has been arrested on charges of unlawfully hiring staff at the request of politicians and local “bigwigs”, The Korea Times reports. On Thursday, the Chuncheon District Court in Gangwon Province ordered the arrest of Choi Heung-jip citing the risk of destruction of evidence. Dozens of suspects who allegedly asked […]

    Kangwon Land saw gaming revenue fall in 17Q3

    Kangwon Land, the operator of South Korea’s only locals-permitted casino saw a 10.2 percent decrease in gross gaming revenue for the three months ended September 30, 2017. Gross gaming revenue amounted to KRW376.7 billion in 17Q3, down from KRW419.4 billion in 16Q3. Total sales revenue fell 9.8 percent to KRW395.1 billion, while net profit decreased […]

    Kangwon Land admits to past corruption scandal

    Casino operator Kangwon Land may see itself back in the center of a corruption scandal which took place between 2012 and 2013, local media reports. In 2015, Kangwon Land was embroiled in a corruption case after it was alleged that a large number of people hired between 2012 and 2013 was as a result of […]

    Kangwon Land to limit credit card cash services

    Kangwon Land, the only casino in South Korea that allows local gamblers, says it is discontinuing credit card cash services at the property starting September 1, 2017. Announced on Monday last week, the operator said the move is part of a bold policy shift to create a healthy gaming environment for casinos. While short-term lending […]

    Kangwon posts 10.7 pct decline in net profit in 17Q2

    Kangwon Land posted a 10.7 percent decline in net profit for the second quarter of 2017, reaching KRW110.4 billion (US$96.9 million), according to a company results filing. The South Korean locals-permitted casino noted that total sales declined 6 percent to KRW387 billion in 17Q2, down from KRW411.8 billion in 16Q2. Gaming sales fell 6.5 percent […]

    Foreigner-only casino sales swing to growth in 2016

    Korea’s foreigner-only casinos bounced back after seeing declines in 2015, registering a 2.6 percent increase in turnover in 2016 – reaching KRW1.3 trillion, according to data from the National Gambling Control Commission. Visitors numbers to these casinos however dropped in 2016, falling 9.6 percent to 2.36 million visitors in 2016 compared to 2.61 million in […]

    Kangwon Land profit falls, non-gaming a bright spot

    Kangwon Land posted a 9 percent drop in 17Q1 profit as gaming revenue declined. The South Korean operator, which runs the only casino in the country at which locals are allowed to gamble, said net profit in the period was KRW129.8 billion won ($116.4 million), down 9.1 percent. Total revenue fell 3.1 percent to KRW423 […]

    Chinese tourist decline will hurt Paradise City

    South Korea’s Paradise City may face hard yards due to a ban on Chinese tour groups to the country, notes Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Margaret Huang in a report earlier this month. “The $1.1 billion, mass-market oriented property had hoped to capture Chinese visitors with a Korean culture theme… Yet the travel ban is likely to […]

    Kangwon voluntary bans rise in 2016

    The number of Koreans taking up voluntary exclusions to Kangwon Land Casino is on the rise, local media reports. Nearly 4,500 people banned themselves from the casino last year, compared to 3,484 in 2012, said officials. An increasing number of gamblers are also voluntarily limiting their days of casino access in a given month, increasing […]

    Gambling nets Seoul $54.5b over 15 years

    The South Korean government has earned 62.5 trillion won (US$54.56 billion) from the gambling industry over the past 15 years, about half of it through taxes, the Yonhap news agency reported. The Korea Taxpayers Association analyzed records from the National Gambling Control Commission and found that the government collected approximately 31.55 trillion won in taxes […]

    Kangwon Land slowdown seen as short term

    Kangwon Land, whose top-line growth slowed to 3.8 percent last year, is likely to see a recovery in its fortunes driven by an upgrade in its slot machines, strong domestic growth and a potential boost from the Winter Olympics next year, Morgan Stanley says. The operator, which is the only one in South Korea where […]

    Korean gambling business is booming

    Lottery, casino and horse racing revenues in South Korea expanded sharply in 2016 despite a long-lasting economic slowdown, local media reports. Sales of lottery tickets rose 9.3 percent year-on-year to KRW 3.9 trillion, while Kangwon Land, the country’s only local-permitted casino saw KRW1.7 trillion in sales, up 3.8 percent year-on-year. The Korea Racing Authority saw […]

    Kangwon Land to underperform in 16Q4: analysts

    Korea’s only casino allowing for local entry, Kangwon Land, is likely to have underperformed in 16Q4 and will continue to do so in 2017, say Korean analysts. Shinyoung Securities, which was quoted by the Korea Times on Monday reportedly cut its target price for the casino to KRW 45,000 (US$39.1) from KRW 50,000. While the […]

    G1 Entertainment, Kangwon prepare for Primorye casino

    Summit Ascent Holdings’ G1 Entertainment says it is currently preparing for its second gaming facility, which will be in partnership with South Korean casino operator Kangwon Land, according to a report on the local government website. “There are plans to build a facility of 100,000 square meters, including 400 to 500 hotel rooms… At the […]

    Kangwon Land posts 4.5 percent net income increase in 16Q3

    South Korean casino operator Kangwon Land posted a 4.5 percent year-on-year increase in net income for the third quarter of 2016, totalling KRW 124.3 billion ($108.4 million). Revenue from sales increased 6 percent year-on-year to KRW 438.1 billion in the quarter, according to the company’s filing to the Korea Stock Exchange. Last quarter, the operator’s […]

    Korean stocks reliant on Chinese tourists take hit

    South Korean stocks tied to Chinese tourism slumped after concerns that local governments in mainland China are trying to limit the flow of visitors to the country, Bloomberg reports. According to an official at the Korea Tourism Organization in Seoul, Chinese authorities are ordering travel agents to curb cheap travel packages to South Korea from […]

    Kangwon land to impose cooling off measures

    Kangwon Land, the only casino in South Korea where locals are permitted to gamble, is considering imposing tougher measures to prevent problem gambling. The operator is planning to implement a cooling off period of up to three months for those suspected of problem gambling, according to local media reports. CEO Ham Seung-hui told the National […]

    Tigre De Cristal operator to team up with Kangwon Land

    Summit Ascent Holdings Ltd has announced it has entered into a non-binding agreement with Kangwon Land Inc for “potential areas of cooperation and strategic partnership”. The deal includes a “possible Korean contractor and Korean project finance for phase two” of Tigre de Cristal, as well as “project finance investment in phase two by Kangwon Land.” […]

    Kangwon Land opposes Saemangeum casino

    Kangwon Land has officially stated its opposition to the establishment of a new locals-permitted casino in the Saemangeum region, Business Korea reports. The operator pointed out the abandoned mine area in the Gangwon Province and Saemangeum had distinct differences. “The Kangwon Land Casino was inevitable for the livelihood of more than 300,000 people in the […]

    Government mulls second casino for locals

    South Korea’s People’s Party are seeking to submit a revision bill that would pave the way for a second casino allowing Korean nationals to gamble, reports the Korea Times. The casino would be located in the Saemangeum area in North Jeolla Province. “Some lawmakers are working on a revision bill for the creation of an […]

    Kangwon second quarter results miss forecasts

    Kangwon Land Inc, operator of South Korea’s only locals-allowed casino resort, has posted net income of KRW 123.7 billion (US$110.1 million) for 16Q2, up by 27.1 percent from the same period in 2015. In a filing to the Korea Exchange, the operator reported that revenue from sales increased 5.9 percent year-on-year to KRW 411.8 billion […]

    Watchdog urges govt to tackle problem gambling

    South Korea’s state auditor has urged the government to roll out tighter plans to prevent gambling addiction, local media reports. According to a study conducted by the Board of Audit and Inspection (BAI), a large number of addicts are being observed at Kangwon Land, the nation’s only casino that is open to locals. The survey […]

    A second “locals” casino will destroy the country, says Jung

    A second casino in Korea permitting the entry of locals will “destroy the country”, an international gaming expert warns. In an interview with Korea Herald during G2E Asia in Macau last week, David Jung, Chairman of Hero Poker said allowing a casino to open within urban areas in Korea is a “dangerous idea”. “If they […]

    Korea unlikely to lift locals ban

    South Korea is unlikely to reconsider its stance on banning local access to casinos until after the monopoly of Kangwon Land ends in 2025, according to a market expert. Currently Kangwon Land, located in remote area of the country, is the only casino in which Koreans are allowed to gamble. It accounts for $1.7 billion […]

    Strong business growth for Kangwon Land in 2016; Daiwa

    Kangwon Land Inc, operator of South Korea’s only locals-allowed casino resort has seen strong business growth in the first two months of 2016, according to Daiwa analysts. “Management noted that the casino resort saw stable growth in the average utilisation rate of all its casino tables (around 81 percent) while it seeks ways to meet […]

    South Korea casinos will find it difficult to achieve “robust returns”, says Fitch

    South Korea’s new casino developments will find it difficult to see strong returns on investment due to restrictions on local patrons, says Fitch Ratings. The rating agency said large scale integrated resort projects in South Korea will face competitive pressures from Macau, Singapore, the Philippines and Australia. “We believe this pressure will not abate as the first casino […]

    Kangwon Land unaffected by China squeeze

    Kangwon Land Co Ltd has been cashing in on its monopoly of domestic patrons, unaffected by the Chinese VIP downturn, much unlike their foreigner-only peers. Kangwon Land stock surged 21 percent in 2015, now valued at $7.2 billion. It is the only casino in South Korea to admit locals, allowing for stable growth despite its […]

    Kangwon Land sees net profit jump 96.3 percent in Y15Q4

    Korean local casino operator Kangwon Land Inc has reported net income for Y15Q4 at KRW 93.0 billion (US$75.8 million), up 96.3 percent from the same period in 2014, according to a recent filing to the Korean Stock Exchange. Revenue from sales in the fourth quarter increased by 8.6 percent year on year to KRW405.9 billion, […]

    Expect weak results for GKL and Paradise; Morgan Stanley

    Foreigner-only casino operators, Paradise Group and Grand Korea Leisure Co will see weak results in 4Q15 due to the ongoing decline in Chinese VIPs, says Morgan Stanley. Sales are expected to decline 18 percent year on year for GKL as the number of Chinese VIPs continued to fall by 50 percent year on year in […]

    IR oversupply will pressure margins in S. Korea, Morgan Stanley says

    The opening of new integrated resorts amidst shrinking Chinese VIP demand will compress margins at foreigner-only casinos in Korea, Morgan Stanley says. With Korea’s first integrated resort scheduled to open in 2017, Morgan Stanley estimates the supply-demand imbalance to further tip, with table capacity to rise 37 percent year-on-year and the number of Chinese VIPs […]

    Leisure tax not likely to be imposed on Kangwon Land

    A controversial leisure tax is unlikely to be imposed on South Korea’s Kangwon Land amidst weak third-quarter gaming revenue, according to analysts from Daiwa Securities.  Daiwa analyst Thomas Y. Kwon said: “We doubt Kangwon province’s renewed focus on a controversial leisure tax will amount to much in the near future, and believe any bill would […]

    Kangwon Land net income up 12.8 percent in 15Q3

    South Korea’s Kangwon Land Inc reported net income of KRW119.0 billion ($103.1 million) for the third quarter of 2015, up 12.8 percent year-on-year. The company, which operates the only casino open to locals, said its sales revenue went up by 5 percent during the period to KRW413.5 billion and up 6.3 percent quarter-on-quarter, while operating […]

    Kangwon Land net income down 3.2 percent in 15Q2

    Kangwon Land reported net income of KRW97.3 billion ($81.6 million) in 15Q2, down 3.2 percent from the same period the year before. The company’s sales amounted to KRW388.9 billion for the period, up 9.3 percent year-on-year, while operating income grew 19.7 percent to KRW147.9 billion. Kangwon Land Casino is the only one in South Korea […]

    South Korea faces opposition to cruise ship gambling

    Critics have slammed a South Korean government ministry’s proposal to allow locals to gamble aboard cruise ships flying the national flag. They argue that the maritime ministry’s move will contradict the current near-nationwide ban on locals gambling in land-based casinos.  The ministry promoting the local casino cruise ships idea says there would be tough rules […]

    Jeju casinos at highest risk from Covid-19 downturn

    South Korea’s three major operators are likely to come through the economic downturn caused by the Covid-19 pandemic without too much difficulty, but the smaller and weaker operators on the island of Jeju may face a much tougher time, analysts say.

    S. Korea loses lustre as foreign investors withdraw

    Results for South Korea’s gaming operators improved in 2016, although foreign operators appear to be losing patience, with major projects either stalled or abandoned. Market watchers say the initial euphoria faded fast when operators were faced with the reality on the ground, which includes high costs, difficulty in client acquisition and changing regulation.

    MERS shows risk of tourism dependency in S.Korea

    South Korea says its tourism arrivals have now almost recovered following an outbreak of Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome in May that triggered a three-month plunge in visitor numbers.