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South Korea – Paradise hopes China will feed Incheon development

By - 6 August 2014

South Korean operator Paradise and Sega Sammy Holdings believe their joint project near Incheon airport, which is set to open in 2017, is close enough to north east China to compete with Macau for Chinese players.

The two companies will begin construction of South Korea’s first integrated resort in October with the first phase including 120 tables, 400 slots and 300 electronic gaming tables.

Choi Jong-hwan, CEO of Paradise Sega Sammy believes that the growing population in north east China will need to travel. He described it as a ‘megatrend’ adding that Korea was such a popular choice of destination with the Chinese that the resort would play up its Korean culture with k-pop and local cuisine. He explained that junket operators will account for up to 30 per cent of revenue, compared to just five per cent at its other casinos. He hopes that one day the government will allow Koreans to gamble in the new casino but stressed that this wasn’t part of the business plan moving forward. Koreans would, he explained, be travelling to Japan when its casino sector opens. The one casino that does allow local play; Kangwon Land generated US$1.24bn in GGR in 2013, almost reaching the level of the revenue of the rest of the country’s 16 foreigner-only venues.

Caesars Entertainment and Hong Kong’s Lippo will open a similar sized development in South Korea in 2018 whilst Genting Singapore and Landing International Development want to build a $2.2bn casino resort on Jeju Island.

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