Summit Ascent Holdings

    Summit Ascent Holdings Limited (Formerly known as Arnhold Holdings Limited) (the “Company”) was founded in 1993 and its shares were listed on the Main Board of The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited since 10 January 1994 (Stock Code: 102). The principal activity of the Company is investment holding with our major project being integrated resort development in the Russian Far East near the beautiful seaside city of Vladivostok. Through its operational subsidiaries, the Group has a legacy business that is engaged in trading of tiles and engineering operations products.

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    Summit Ascent's Tigre de Cristal

    Summit Ascent to be constituent of MSCI H.K. Micro Cap Index

    Summit Ascent Holdings, operator of Russia's Tigre de Cristal, said it has been accepted as a constituent stock in the MSCI Hong Kong Micro Cap Index, effective after the close on May 27.

    Summit Ascent says Tigre de Cristal Phase II delayed to 2023

    Summit Ascent said the opening of the second phase of its Tigre de Cristal Resort in Russia's Primorye gambling zone has been pushed back by a year to 2023 due to delays caused by Covid.

    Summit Ascent appoints Genting’s David Chua as new CEO

    Summit Ascent has appointed former Genting Hong Kong President David Chua as its new Chief Executive Officer for a three-year term, effective from May 1.

    Strong local demand lifts Summit Ascent H2

    Summit Ascent Holdings, operator of Tigre De Cristal in Vladivostok said it swung the second half of 2020 to a positive adjusted EBITDA and net profit, thanks mainly to strong local demand. 
    Primorye, gambling zone, russia

    Primorye projects saw “major 2020 progress,” officials say

    Officials in the Primorye gambling zone have been on a public relations blitz in recent months, highlighting how projects are now pushing ahead and stressing there is no change in the long-term plans for 12 casino complexes.

    Travel to Primorye down 24% in 2020, but long-term plans intact

    The Primorye gambling zone saw a 24 percent drop in resort attendance in 2020 due to the pandemic, but authorities are optimistic about the future and have no intention of changing the long-term plans for the hub.

    Summit Ascent says Tigre de Cristal staff begin vaccinations

    Summit Ascent Holdings said that staff in Tigre de Cristal near Vladivostok has started to receive Russia’s self-developed Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccination. 
    Summit Ascent's Tigre de Cristal

    Summit Ascent GGR to rise 190% for two years: BoA

    Bank of America/Merrill Lynch has added its voice to other recent commentary pointing to significant upside for Summit Ascent due to optimism over its projects in Russia and the Philippines.
    Summit Ascent's Tigre de Cristal

    Staycations to benefit Summit Ascent in short term

    Locals seeking staycations are likely to provide strong support for Summit Ascent in the short term until international travel resumes, Citic Securities analysts wrote in a note.
    Tigre de Cristal

    Summit Ascent GGR growth to soar on Suncity backing

    Brokerage house Credit Suisse has initiated coverage of Summit Ascent Holdings, giving the firm a strong vote of confidence due to the backing of major shareholder Suncity Group, with gross gambling revenue projected to surge 349 percent next year.

    Summit Ascent boosting stake in Tigre de Cristal

    Summit Ascent and the Suncity Group have jointly announced that they intend to raise their controlling stake in Oriental Regent Limited (ORL), operator of the Tigre de Cristal resort in Primorye, by a further 10 percent to 77.5 percent.

    Suncity plans direct VIP line at Tigre de Cristal

    Suncity Group Holdings said it plans to set up a direct VIP business line at its Tigre de Cristal property in Russia to help drive business volumes and keep high junket rebates in house. The company said Summit Ascent may increase its stake in Oriental Regent, operator of the resort, to 67.5 percent from 60 percent previously and may end up holding as much as 89 percent if it is the only subscriber to an upcoming share issue.

    Summit Ascent prepares US$200 for Tigre de Cristal second phase

    Summit Ascent Holdings has reiterated that it is preparing an additional US$200 million in investment funds for the Tigre de Cristal second phase development.

    Summit Ascent Q3 slot handle exceeds pre-pandemic levels

    Summit Ascent Holdings, the operator of the Tigre de Cristal, said slot handle in the two and a half months of the quarter its resort was open exceeded pre-pandemic levels at 103 percent, while mass drop was 96 percent of pre-closure levels. VIP was affected by closed borders. 

    Summit Ascent loses US$6.1 million in H1

    Summit Ascent Holdings has reported a HK$47 million (US$6.1 million) loss for the first half of 2020. The previous year, there had been a HK$42.8 million profit in this same period. The group’s total revenue in the first half was HK$96.0 million, down 63 percent year-on-year. The company took a heavy financial hit from the […]

    Summit Ascent issues profit warning as Suncity moves toward control

    Summit Ascent Holdings issued a profit warning and Q1 financial results on Tuesday, in coordination with a Suncity Group circular confirming their intention to take a controlling stake in the firm. For the three months ending March 31, Summit Ascent reported nearly HK$92 million (US$12 million) in gaming and hotel operations revenue at Tigre de […]

    Taxes lowered for Tigre de Cristal over Covid-19 outbreak

    The legislative assembly in Russia’s Primorye has temporarily lowered taxes for Tigre de Cristal as a relief measure over the Covid-19 outbreak, a local news publication reports. On July 16, the deputies unanimously approved a bill reducing the tax rate on the gambling business following restrictions on its operations. Tigre de Cristal started operating from […]

    Tigre de Cristal granted permission to reopen

    Summit Ascent Holdings has announced that the governor of Primorsky Krai granted permission for Tigre de Cristal, owned by the group’s subsidiary in Vladivostok, to reopen for business effective today. The gaming areas, the hotel, and other amenities have been permitted to resume their operations. They were originally ordered to close on March 28. As […]

    Suncity aims to make Summit Ascent into a subsidiary

    The Suncity Group explained in a June 1 filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange that it is aiming to take a 70 percent interest in Summit Ascent and make the company into a subsidiary. Under the proposed deal, Victor Sky, a direct wholly-owned subsidiary of the Suncity Group, which currently holds a 22 percent […]

    Russia casinos extend lockdown indefinitely

    The casinos in Russia's Primorye and Siberia zones have extended their operational suspensions for an indefinite period of time amid the Covid-19 outbreak.

    Summit Ascent suspends operations at Tigre de Cristal

    Summit Ascent announced to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange on Friday that it was suspending its gaming operations at Tigre de Cristal in Primorye and would offer only limited hotel services. “The aim of the temporary suspension is to prevent crowds gathering during the pandemic. The group fully supports President Vladimir Putin and the Russian […]
    Summit Ascent's Tigre de Cristal

    Summit Ascent executive director quits due to strategic differences

    Summit Ascent, the operator of the Tigre de Cristal in the Russian Far East, said its CEO Eric Landheer has quit the company due to differences of opinion with the board over strategic business development.
    Summit Ascent's Tigre de Cristal

    Summit Ascent expects cluster effect in 2021

    Summit Ascent Holdings, operator of the Tigre De Cristal casino in Vladivostok, says it expects to see a cluster effect from nearby casinos as early as 2021 or 2022. There are currently three integrated resorts under construction in the region, including NagaCorp’s Naga Vladivostok (2020), Fortune Diamond’s Imperial Casino (late 2020), and the Shambala Casino […]

    Tigre de Cristal Phase II opening in 2022

    The second phase of the Tigre de Cristal’s development in the Primorye Gaming Zone in the Russian Far East is now likely to open in early 2022 following changes to its design, owner Summit Ascent said. 

    Summit Ascent raising funds to develop Tigre de Cristal

    Summit Ascent Holdings said it is looking to place up to 300 million shares, in order to raise funds to further develop its gaming business in Russia.  On Thursday, the company agreed to place up to 300 million placing shares at a price of HK$1.01 per share.  Summit Ascent Holdings said it expects net proceeds […]
    Tigre de Cristal

    Summit Ascent expects interim profit

    Summit Ascent Holdings, the operator of the Tigre de Cristal, in Russia’s Primorye gaming zone, said it expects to post a profit for the first half of this year, compared with a loss the same period in 2018. 

    Alvin Chau named chairman of Summit Ascent Holdings

    Suncity chairman Alvin Chau Cheok Wa has been appointed as the non-executive director and chairman of Summit Ascent Holdings Limited, with effect June 1, 2019. The appointment follows Suncity buying a further 24.68 percent stake in Summit Ascent Holdings in late April, bringing its total interest in the operator of the Tigre de Cristal in […]
    Tigre de Cristal

    Summit Ascent announces board changes after Suncity hikes stake

    Summit Ascent Holdings has announced board room changes after Suncity Group Holdings increased its stake in the operator of Tigre de Cristal earlier this month.

    Suncity ups stake in Summit Ascent to almost 28 percent

    Suncity Group Holdings has bought a further 24.68 percent stake in Summit Ascent Holdings for HK$717.8 million ($91.5 million) as it seeks to build an “integrated tourism-related platform.”

    Summit Ascent deputy chair resigns

    Summit Ascent said its executive director and deputy chairman John Wang has resigned to pursue other business interests with effect from April 12.

    First Steamship mulling Summit Ascent stake sale

    First Steamship Co. is considering an approach to buy its entire stake in Summit Ascent Holdings, saying a potential gain would help boost the group’s earnings.

    Summit Ascent main shareholders mull share disposal

    Summit Ascent Holdings, operators of Tigre De Cristal, has announced that its main shareholders, First Steamship Co Ltd, and Summit Ascent chairman Kuo Jen Hao, are considering selling their stakes in the company. In a voluntary announcement on Tuesday, the Hong Kong-listed company said the two were approached by a third party to acquire their […]

    Mass earnings overtakes VIP at Tigre De Cristal

    Hong Kong-listed Summit Ascent Holdings, the operator of Tigre de Cristal in Russia posted a loss for H1, though the company saw a significant improvement in mass table revenue.  The group posted a total loss of $10.3 million, narrowing from $33 million in the prior year period. Though total income attributable to owners of the […]

    Tigre De Cristal second phase to focus on non-gaming

    G1 Entertainment, the company behind Tigre De Cristal, is planning its second stage of the casino resort which is said to focus on non-gaming facilities. G1 Entertainment executive director Stylianos Tsifetakis recently met with the management of the Primorsky Territory Development Corporation to discuss plans for the development of the entertainment sector in the region. […]

    Russia does u-turn on casino tax collection

    Russia’s parliament has pushed through a law that will exempt casinos from the need to deduct taxes from their clients’ winnings. The law was signed by President Vladimir Putin just before the year-end, when the legislation making casinos de-facto tax agents was due to come into force. According to the new law, casinos are no […]

    Melco finalizes Cyprus accord, boosts stake

    Melco International Development has sealed its joint venture agreement with CPZ to develop a resort on Cyprus and said it will increase its holding in the project to 75 percent from the current level of 70.74 percent. The accord is to develop an integrated resort in Limassol and up to four other satellite casinos on […]

    Lawrence Ho divests Summit Ascent stake

    Lawrence Ho said he is selling off his entire stake in Summit Ascent Holdings, shortly after the Russian government announced changes that could potentially double taxes for the company’s Tigre de Cristal resort near Vladivostok. Ho, who is chairman of Summit Ascent, holds 1.34 percent directly and a further 16.03 percent through his wholly owned […]

    Summit warns of Russian tax hike

    Summit Ascent Holdings, the operator of Tigre De Cristal has warned investors of a potential doubling of gaming tax rates in Russia. Under a draft bill submitted to the State Duma, the government proposed to raise the maximum tax leviable per gaming table to RUB250,000 from RUB125,000 and the maximum tax leviable on gaming machines […]

    Craig Ballantyne resigns as COO of Summit Ascent

    Craig Ballantyne, chief operating officer of Summit Ascent Holdings is resigning from his current position to take on a new role at Melco International Development Ltd. While the date of departure was not specified in the Tuesday filing, it is understood that Mr. Ballantyne will make his move once he completes the handover of his […]
    Tigre de Cristal

    VIP surge drives Summit Ascent 17H1 revenue

    Summit Ascent Holdings, operator of the Tigre de Cristal in Vladivostok, saw revenues increase 20 percent in the first half of 2017, attributed mainly to an influx of VIP revenue in the period. Total revenues for the year reached HK$204.6 million. The company recorded a net loss of HK$5.3 million in 17H1, attributed mainly to […]

    Tigre to enjoy monopoly for at least two more years

    Summit Ascent Holdings, operator of Tigre de Cristal in Vladivostok, is set to continue to get free reign over the market for at least the next two years, says Union Gaming. The brokerage said its VIP segment will be the main winner, forecasting a 80 growth in VIP volume in 2017. The casino saw VIP […]

    Royal Time Primorye project in trouble after court ruling

    A local court has upheld a decision by the Corporation of the Primorsky Territory gambling zone in Russia’s Far East to terminate a contract with the Royal Time Group over delays in the construction of its casino project. According to Betting Business Russia, the Arbitration Court of Primorsky Territory made the decision on June 1st. […]

    Summit Ascent swings to profit in 2016

    Russian casino operator Summit Ascent Holdings Ltd swung to a net profit of HK$559,000 (US$71,800) in the full year 2016, compared to a net loss of HK$85.4 million in 2015. 2016 was the first full calendar year of operations of Tiger de Cristal, which grew rolling chip turnover from HK$3.5 billion in 16H1 to HK$10.6 […]

    Tigre de Cristal welcomed over 200,000 visitors in 2016

    Russia’s Tigre de Cristal casino, operated by Hong Kong based Summit Ascent Holdings had reportedly welcomed over 200,000 people in 2016, according to local official Konstantin Shestakov. In comparison, the Altai Palace casino in Siberia received just over 27,000 people in the January-November period in 2016, while Russia’s first gambling zone Azov-City in Krasnodar Region, […]

    VIP to drive Tigre De Cristal earnings

    Hong Kong-listed Summit Ascent Holdings Ltd is expected to hit “mid-teens” EBITDA growth in 2017 and 2018, and outsized growth in 2020 following Phase 2, said Union Gaming in a note on Monday. According to the brokerage, Summit Ascent’s first mover advantage, combined with an operator-friendly tax environment, and the high potential of Russia’s VIP […]

    Tigre de Cristal yields $8 million in tax

    Tigre de Cristal, operated by Summit Ascent Holdings has reportedly yielded nearly RUB 500 million ($8 million) in tax revenues and payments in its first year of operations, local media reports. “G1 Entertainment, a resident company of the Primorye integrated entertainment resort, launched the work of its first facility, Tigre de Cristal, in October 2015. […]

    No plans for Crimea: Summit Ascent

    Summit Ascent Holdings has denied any plans to invest in the gambling zones located in Crimea and Sochi, contrary to media reports. In a statement released to Betting Business Russia, Summit Ascent executive director Craig Ballantyne, said the company was “definitely not planning to invest in the gambling zones located in the Republic of Crimea […]

    Overseas VIP gaming revenue outpaces Macau in 16Q2

    Overseas (ex-Macau) VIP gaming revenue grew 27 percent year-on-year in 16Q2 after two years of negative growth, said Morgan Stanley in a note on Tuesday. “Part of that was driven by new casinos in Saipan /Vladivostok and part from junkets moving to low tax jurisdictions like the Philippines,” said the brokerage, referring to Imperial Pacific’s […]

    Melco International posts 90-fold profit rise after Melco control

    Macau gaming operator Melco International Development has reported more than 90-fold increase in net profit for the six months ended June 30, 2016 – derived from a special gain from taking majority control of Melco Crown Entertainment Limited (MCE). The company became the single largest shareholder of MCE after Australian-listed Crown Resorts reduced its stake […]

    Oriental Regent gains board control of Tigre De Cristal

    Lawrence Ho’s Summit Ascent Russia is said to have a majority of the directors on the board of Oriental Regent, owner of Tigre De Cristal in Russia. According to its filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange last Friday, the company will have four out of seven directors on the newly expanded Oriental Regent board, […]

    Summit Ascent Holdings reports loss due to pre-opening expenses

    Summit Ascent Holdings, operator of Tigre de Cristal, located in Vladivostok, Russia, reported a loss for the year attributed to owners at HK$85.4 million (US$11 million), according to a filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. The loss was expected for the company, headed by Lawrence Ho, as it celebrated its Grand Opening on Nov. […]

    Primorye sets new conditions for future investors

    Future investors in the Primorye gambling zone in Russia’s Far East will need to make a special contribution worth about 1.5 billion roubles ($23 million) towards infrastructure development, according to the local administration’s web site. Primorye Territory Vice Governor Sergey Nekhayev announced new conditions for future investors during a visit by Russian Minister for Far […]

    Russia’s Tigre de Cristal project presented at Eastern Economic Forum

    Russia’s much delayed Tigre de Cristal casino complex in the Primorye region in Russia’s far east was presented to delegates at the Eastern Economic Forum, which wrapped up last weekend in Vladivostok. Slot machines were available in a demo mode for delegates to try out, according to regional news agency Craig Ballantyne, who will […]

    Tigre de Cristal resort grand opening delayed to late October

    Summit Ascent Holdings announced that the grand opening of its casino development in Russia has been delayed to late October, with a soft opening scheduled for October 8. The resort, The Tigre de Cristal, being developed by Summit’s subsidiary G1 Entertainment LLC within the Integrated Entertainment Zone of the Primorye region has encountered construction setbacks. […]

    Summit Ascent completes hiring for Russia project, sees Aug. opening

    Summit Ascent Holdings said it has now completed the hiring for its new casino in Vladivostok and expects to open the delayed property no later than August 28th. In a Hong Kong Stock Exchange filing, the company said its First Gambling Company of the East unit continues to make solid progress on the resort despite […]

    Summit Ascent close to completing Russia resort

    Summit Ascent Holdings, backed by Melco International CEO Lawrence Ho, said it has nearly completed construction on its integrated resort in Primorye, Russia. “The construction of the integrated resort in the Russian Federation is nearing completion. Being the single largest shareholder in the joint venture we are actively involved in all phases of construction, staffing of […]

    Summit Ascent spends $3.2m on EGMs for Russia venture

    Hong Kong-listed Summit Ascent said it agreed to pay $3.2 million on electronic gambling machines for a casino project in Primorye in Russia’s Far East. The company, through its units, will buy 300 EGMs from Tiga Rus. Payment will be made in 12 monthly installments after the casino begins operations and will be funded by […]

    Primorye’s gaming hub dream edges towards reality

    The concept of a casino and entertainment hub in Russia’s Far East will take a further step towards fruition this summer with the expected opening of the Shambhala Casino.
    Primorye entrance

    Primorye project seen moving ahead despite crisis

    The Primorsky Krai Development Corp (PKDC), which is responsible for management of the Primorye gaming zone, expects a key project to move ahead in May this year, despite the outbreak of the coronavirus and remains upbeat about the region’s longer-term prospects.
    Primorye zone

    Korean firms eye Primorye zone

    Three firms from South Korea are eyeing projects in the Primorye gambling zone in Russia’s far east, with Summit Ascent, the region’s only existing operator, predicting benefits from a “cluster effect” by 2021. The zone is considered the most viable of Russia’s gambling regions due to its close proximity to the North Asian markets, in […]

    Investors dodge tax bullet, discuss development plans

    Operators in Russia’s Far East have won a reprieve from a potentially punishing new tax regime and are now discussing further development plans with the government of the zone. In the interests of long-term investment, Primorye chose to leave taxes unchanged. It now hopes to attract further investors through land auctions this summer and to introduce more non-gaming elements. 

    Tax changes rock Russia’s gambling sector

    Russia has passed a bill that doubles tax rates for both land-based casinos and bookmakers, with even more hikes in the pipeline, raising concern the ever shifting sands of regulation are changing the outlook for the industry and threatening foreign investment. Steve Gallaway, managing partner at Global Market Advisors, says the “changes to the tax regime are devastating for the IEZ (Integrated Entertainment Zone) in Primorye,” referring to the most developed of Russia’s gaming zones.

    Primorye picks up development pace

    The Russian gambling zone of Primorye, which has not been developing as fast as anticipated, is stepping up its efforts to attract more investors as part of an ambitious plan to almost treble visitor numbers by 2025. The company developing the zone is seeking expressions of interest to auction three plots of vacant land and has held talks with groups from Russia, Europe and China.

    Casinos debut amid talk of new zones

    Russia’s southern and western gaming zones have seen a flurry of activity over the past few months, while reports have emerged of new areas being considered for casino investment. Moscow designated four zones for casino gambling in 2009 in remote locations on the fringes of the country and outlawed gambling anywhere else. Since then, the zones have been expanded to six to include the Crimea and Sochi, the home of the 2014 Winter Olympics. While one of the original zones -- Azov City -- is expected to be closed down. According to reports more zones may be on the cards, raising question marks over the shifting sands of Russian regulation for foreign investors.

    Tigre de Cristal eyes non-gaming to lure local crowds

    Tigre de Cristal, Russia’s biggest casino, is focusing on its non-gaming attractions to boost revenue following lower-than-expected demand from locals for its casino offering. While the resort is primarily targeting visitors from Northern China for growth, at present the tourism infrastructure is lacking, forcing a greater focus on the domestic market, experts say. 

    Gaming zones struggle with bureaucracy, lack of infrastructure

    The tenth Russian Gaming Week conference was held in Moscow earlier this month, but a promised focus on the country’s land-based industry failed to materialize. Organizers had scheduled discussions on the often confusing and ever-shifting situation in Russia’s gambling zones on the second day of the conference, but the program was replaced by a set of marketing presentations, with no explanation given. Despite the high-profile launch of Summit Ascent’s Tigre de Cristal in Primorye last year, experts say the reality is that the zones in Russia are struggling. Samoil Binder, Deputy Head of the Russian Association of Gambling Business, said the situation is “deplorable.”

    Tax hike proposal gambles with Russian casino prospects

    Russian gambling industry executives have lambasted a Finance Ministry proposal to raise gaming taxes, saying that such an initiative would "destroy the gambling business." To date, one of Russia's key draws for foreign investors has been its low taxation rate. If taxes rise tenfold as proposed, the industry will come to a standstill, participants say. 

    “One Belt, One Road” to drive tourism/casino growth

    While Beijing’s anti-corruption drive has often been blamed as a primary factor behind the slump in Macau’s gaming revenue, the same regime is also responsible for proposing and supporting another initiative that may have widespread implications for the development of the Asian gaming industry -- the “One Belt and One Road” project. The plan to develop the old Silk Road linking Asia to Europe is likely to provide a significant boost to tourism in tandem with the gaming industry.

    Tigre de Cristal counts on unique position, tourism under penetration

    Summit Ascent Holdings is counting on the under penetration of the North Asian markets and its head start in the Primorye gaming zone to ensure the success of its new Tigre de Cristal property in Russia’s Far East. Speaking to AGB, Eric Landheer, Director - Corporate Finance and Strategy of Summit Ascent Holdings says the resort has a unique market position and is one of the only true integrated resorts in northern Asia. 

    Can Siberia’s Tigre de Cristal roar in Russia’s Far East?

    The first casino in Russia’s Far East, which has been touted as a potential Macau of the north, has officially opened after lengthy delays.The Tigre de Cristal held its soft launch on Oct. 8th in the Primorye gaming zone near the city of Vladivostok. The debut of the casino has been postponed multiple times since 2011, but the pace of development picked up when Asian investors became involved in the project in 2013. The resort is expected to appeal mainly to travellers from northern China and Korea, although unlike in many other Asian countries locals will also be able to participate. About 300 million people live within a three-hour flight of Vladivostok. 

    Operators upbeat on Russia despite regulatory uncertainty

    Potential investors say they remain upbeat about the prospects for Russia’s gaming zones, despite continuing regulatory uncertainty and the unpredictability of the government, which abruptly announced the shutdown of the Azov area earlier this year. Russian Gaming Week, held in Moscow from June 3-4, attracted about 4,000 attendees, double the number of the prior year.

    Primorye activity heats up, with $1.1b in planned new investment

    The gambling zone of Primorye in Russia’s Far East continues to pull ahead of rivals, with the expected summer opening of Summit Ascent’s integrated resort and news of two other major investments worth more than $1 billion.