The Chairman and CEO of Las Vegas Sands says that “we’re certainly looking hard at Thailand”, as the nation’s House of Representatives earlier in January approved a report proposal to set up an entertainment complex (complete with a casino) in the nation.
Speaking on a conference call revealing the company’s 4Q22 results, Rob Goldstein noted the company would “love to […] have a presence there in the future”.
While the vote has gone through to look into the economic impacts and potential social problems from allowing casino gambling in the territory, a decision is likely only to be made by the next government, with expectations for public hearings and referendum, all of which could take two or three years.
Goldstein had previously hinted that LVS was looking to build a large-scale integrated resort “to the scale of Marina Bay Sands” in a “top tier” country in Asia, without specifying where.
In the 1Q22 conference call, however, Goldstein noted that reports about its desire to build an IR in Thailand were premature.
Currently, the company operates multi-billion-dollar integrated resorts in Macau and Singapore.
The company had previously been in talks to set up an IR in Japan, but on the 4Q22 conference call the chairman noted that “Japan […] is not there”, further stating that “Korea is nothing viable to speak of today”.
Back in 2014, LVS had demonstrated interest in building an integrated resort in South Korea, focused on the port city of Busan, but the project was never finalized.
The initial proposed investment by LVS in Busan was between $4 billion and $9.7 billion, according to reports.
Now, despite LVS’ Singapore property – Marina Bay Sands – helping to prop up its struggling Macau operations, it looks like the company is focusing more on the United States market than Asia for its expansion, targeting a casino project in downstate New York, in Nassau.
Goldstein called the potential New York casino “an extraordinary and unique opportunity”
The chairman noted that “There’s only a few casinos there. It’s probably the only place in the U.S. where you can have millions and millions of people, and yet there’ll be probably just a handful of casinos total.”
He furthered that the “win per units there will be exceptional”, but notes that the overall project is focused on its hotel, convention, theater and entertainment products.
LVS has already agreed to purchase a long-term lease of a former coliseum in Long Island, and is actively in the bidding for the three downstate gaming licenses that New York state is accepting applications for.
Asking prices for each license are reportedly $500 million.
Other companies, such as Caesars, Genting, Wynn Resorts and MGM had previously expressed interest in bidding for the New York licenses.