16 to bid for Singapore

Apr 26, 2005 6:42 AM

Singapore officials will have their hands full over the next several months as they attempt to evaluate casino/entertainment development proposals from 16 companies from around the world.

The city-state announced Sunday that the 16 companies had properly completed the first request for proposals and would now compete for the two licenses to be granted for the city proper and a nearby island.

From the U.S. point of view, the leading bidders are Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS) and Wynn Resorts Ltd. (WYNN), two of the license recipients in Macau, and MGM MIRAGE Inc. (MGG), that plans a joint venture with gaming magnate Stanley Ho’s daughter, Pansy Ho, for another Macau casino, as well Harrah’s Entertainment Inc.(HET), whose plans for Singapore include a joint venture with a local firm.

But speculation has also been focused on other firms such as Kerzner International (KZR), owner and operator of the Atlantis Casino complex in the Bahamas, as well as the operator of hotels and casinos in various parts of Europe, the Middle East and South Africa; the Genting Berhad firm of Malaysia; lesser known Peermont Global of Johannesburg, South Africa, and gaming "whale" Kerry Packer’s Publishing and Broadcasting Ltd. of Australia.

MGM MIRAGE will submit a proposal with its partner, CapitaLand, for the license to build a property that could be valued at $3 billion. Terry Lanni, chairman and CEO of MGG, said that MGM MIRAGE AND CapitaLand, "look forward to participating in the selection process," adding that the partnership plans to develop two integrated resorts.

Speaking for Wynn Resorts, Ron Kramer, president, confirmed the company’s commitment to "working with the governmental agencies to develop a new, exciting destination. This news is a great start to an exciting time as we prepare for the April 28 opening of our Wynn Las Vegas Resort and County Club."

Malaysia’s Genting is partnering with Star Cruises Ltd. and has enlisted Universal Studios to develop a theme park and entertainment giant behind movie franchises such as "The Mummy" and "Jurassic Park" to support its bid.

More earnings

Four other gaming companies have announced dates to report their earnings for the first quarter. They are:

Riviera Holdings Corp. (RIV) on Tuesday, April 26, at 11 a.m. PDT.

Churchill Downs Inc. (CHDN) on Tuesday, April 26, at 3:30 p.m. PDT.

Ameristar Casinos Inc. (ASCA) on Wednesday, May 4, at l p.m. PDT.

Shuffle Master Inc. (SHFL) on Thursday, June 9, at 2 p.m. PDT