Sawada may be weak link in Nagasaki’s IR plans

There are indications that one of the key players in Nagasaki’s anticipated bid to host an IR is becoming less enthusiastic about the prospects—Huis Ten Bosch President Hideo Sawada.

With some of the IR development proposals reportedly reaching as high as JPY300 billion (about $2.7 billion), Sawada is apparently not entirely convinced that an IR development makes economic sense.

Earlier this month, Sawada told reporters, “We need to proceed cautiously with the IR. It will require an investment of several billion dollars. How will we get a return on that investment?”

He added, “If we don’t create something that is truly different, we will lose out to our competitors.”

While the precise relationship between a potential IR consortium and Huis Ten Bosch remains to be determined, it will weaken Nagasaki’s case considerably if Sawada is not fully committed to the concept, especially because it is a smaller regional market and his travel agency H.I.S. would also have a major part to play.