POGOs have won a reprieve from a punishing franchise tax, which may stop the exodus from the country, but uncertainty over business conditions remains high. We have the latest analysis on where things stand. This morning’s newsletter also includes updates from Donaco, whose new leadership is making optimistic predictions for future growth; and there is more optimism from Japan’s Wakayama Prefecture, which believes that it is still on pace to open an IR in spring 2026. Finally, the special cherry-on-top is our latest infographic, this time looking at the top mobile trends that we expect to impact our industry in 2021.
First, the news
- Donaco says its positioned for growth after settling spat
- Wakayama maintains plan to open IR in spring 2026
- Macau month-to-date GGR up 13% from December: Bernstein
- Macau government may collect biometric data on visitors
- Macau aims to deepen ties with Shenzhen
- Las Vegas Sands in talks to begin sports betting
- Entain CEO quits to join sports streaming company
- Dream Tower Casino may have initial VIP focus
- 500 com buys bitcoin mining machines
- Thailand braces for return of casino workers exposed to Covid-19
- Thai police arrest 21 in gambling den bust
What you need to know
Australia-listed Donaco International is starting 2021 on a positive note, finally settling its legal issues and saying it is now positioned for future growth. The company, which operates a casino in northern Vietnam and one in Cambodia, has been in a multi-year legal tussle with the Thai vendors of the Star Vegas casino in Poipet. In a note to the Australian Stock Exchange, Donaco said the dispute has been formally concluded and its half-year results up to Dec. 31 will fully reflect the positive outcome.
The Wakayama Prefectural Government published its IR implementation plan last Thursday, maintaining its optimistic view that it can open an IR by the spring of 2026. Currently, there are four candidate locations competing for a maximum of three possible licenses, and among these Wakayama has provided the smallest estimate of the likely economic growth impact. Moreover, the prefectural bid also suffers from the fact that only two operator bidders were accepted into the RFP process after earlier frontrunners such as Barriere and Bloomberry had to pull out under the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
BY THE NUMB3RS
2020 was the year that changed the game. Locked in their homes hoping for the pandemic to blow over, consumers spent more time and money on mobile phones and apps than ever before. Last year, mobile data analytics firm App Annie found 130 billion apps were downloaded in 2020, up 10 percent year-on-year, whilst mobile app spending increased by 25 percent to $50 billion in just the first half of the year. Time spent on devices also grew by around 25 percent compared to the year before. So what does this all mean for those that develop for mobile? Today, we take a look at the top mobile trends that we expect to impact our industry in 2021.
Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGOs) have won a reprieve from a punishing franchise tax, which may reduce departures from the country, but uncertainty over business conditions remains high, industry insiders say. The Supreme Court stay at present is only temporary and operators are wary. Those considering leaving may rethink and stay put, though those who have departed are unlikely to come back.