Singapore Casinos - over paid and over budget
Subject: Singapore Casinos - over paid and over budget
Uncertainty over how long Singapore's casinos will take to break even
By Georgina Joseph | Posted: 30 March 2010 2016 hrs
Visitors walk towards the entrance of the Resorts World Sentosa casino
on Singapore's Sentosa Island.
SINGAPORE: Singapore's two integrated resorts with their casinos have
gone over budget, according to a panel discussion on the subject on
The discussion was organised by the Singapore Press Club and Asia
The panelists said the casino operators have overpaid for bidding and
building the two integrated resorts.
Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) spent S$7 billion on its development
instead of its original target of S$5.2 billion.
Marina Bay Sands will spend S$8.4 billion, up from the original S$5
The question now is how long they will take to break even, but the
panelists acknowledged it is still too early to assess their
However, they raised other issues.
They said that RWS appeals to a mass market. But with an estimated
daily taking of S$3.5 million, it seems to suggest they are not
breaking even yet.
Universal Studio's future is also questioned, once the novelty wears
"My only hesitations about RWS is more to do with theme parks," said
Sean Monaghan, managing director of AG Leisure Partners. "Disney in
Hong Kong had a troubled start, so trying to predict the viability and
the feasibility of theme parks can be more problematic."
According to gaming analysts, Marina Bay Sands should draw in S$5
million a day in the initial stages.
It has also positioned itself to cater to a more niche market of high
quality gamblers, coupled with its MICE appeal.
Ronald Tan, a gaming analyst, said: "They have a very established
theme at the moment, and they have also the Macau casino, and a huge
data base of gamblers, quality gamblers from China... I think they
will capitalise on that as well."
The panellists said that the higher start-up costs would mean the
resorts must look for more ways to increase revenue.