MGM China Co-Chairperson and Executive Director Pansy Ho Chiu-king said on Tuesday that the gaming operator was prepared for the nation’s new development and opportunities with the opening of its MOP 27 billion (US$ 3.4 billion) MGM Cotai integrated resort providing new tourism experiences.
Ho made the comments while delivering a speech during a press conference at MGM Cotai prior to the property’s opening ceremony later in the evening, which was attended by Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On.
According to the Macau Post Daily, Ho said that the soon-to-open Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge would create new development prospects and opportunities, adding that MGM was prepared for them, so that Macau could get involved in promoting economic cooperation and cultural exchanges between regions in the Greater Bay Area (GBA) and Pan Pearl River Delta (PPRD).
MGM Resorts International Chairman & CEO Jim Murren, who is also MGM China chairperson and executive director, said that the first-of-its-kind MGM Theatre at the new resort would host world class entertainment events tailored for the Macao market, just as the company does in Las Vegas with resident performers such as Cher and Lady Gaga.
In addition, Murren said that as MGM was the largest MICE operator in Las Vegas, it could work with its network of Fortune 500 leaders to host conferences at MGM Cotai.
During a Q&A session, which Ho and Murren did not attend, MGM China CEO and Executive Director Grant Bowie said that with the pricing at MGM Cotai, his company was positioning itself for the premium mass market to support the investment it has made there.
“The critical point in terms of return on investment (ROI) is making sure that your customers keep coming back, that’s why we try to create a niche for ourselves with the upper end of the market, where we believe that there is growth potential for sustainability of core customers in terms of driving incremental revenue, obviously supporting the significant investment that we have made,” Bowie said, adding that MGM’s strategy was to increase the length of stay of its customers and increasing the number of returning customers.
The casino at MGM Cotai has 177 gaming tables and 982 slot machines catering to the premium mass and mass market. According to Bowie, the casino’s VIP lounges will open around the middle of the year, without specifying how many junket operators his company will be working with.
MGM’s sub-concession as a gaming operator in Macao expires in 2020. Bowie said that with MGM Cotai, his company has increased the “probability and improved our belief that we are deserving of an extension by the actions that we carry out.”
“Having to invest this amount of money, it is part of that process of demonstrating our commitment to Macao,” Bowie said.