On a roll: Shadowy casino group AG Millennium reportedly buys Jack Ng's Manila Bay property for $1 billion
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On a roll: Shadowy casino group AG Millennium reportedly buys Jack Ng’s Manila Bay property for $1 billion

A little-known but cash-rich casino group has capped its massive spending spree in the Philippines with its reported purchase of a 22-hectare Manila Bay property.

A Babbler said AG Millennium reportedly paid at least $1 billion for the sprawling property owned by Manila Bay Development Corp. (MBDC) of bilyonaryo Jack Ng.

The property is the site of the long-abandoned Uniwide Coastal Mall which was recently demolished. (Ng obtained a favorable Supreme Court ruling to ejected Uniwide’s bankrupt owner Jimmy Gow who leased 10,000 hectares of the property in 1993.)

Babbler said AG is planning to build a massive casino resort complex in the area which could potentially dwarf the gaming and entertainment companies in the nearby Entertainment City.

Five years ago, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor) granted AG, through Millennium Pan-Asia Hotel and Resort led by CEO Justine Xiao, a license to operate a casino in the government-owned Cebu International Convention Center at the Mandaue City Reclamation Area. AG planned to spend P15 billion for a world-class entertainment center in Cebu.

But Babbler said AG did not push through with the Cebu casino, which was supposed to be built from 2018 to 2020, because of the squatters problem in the area.

Babbler said he does not see AG having any problems transferring its casino location to Manila Bay.

The Manila Bay property is by far the single biggest acquisition of the AG group in the Philippines over the last six years.

AG currently runs two casinos –Boracay International Casino Crown Regency Resort and Convention Center and the Fortunegate Casino at Hotel Stotensberg in Clark Freeport.

AG reportedly bought roughly 40 percent interest in publicly-listed Leisure & Resorts World led by bilyonaryos Albee Benitez and Yosi Tanco.

AG also gobbled up a 2,000-hectare property inside the 54,000-hectare Cagayan Freeport where the group plans to build a township.

Babbler said AG also operated casinos and online gaming in China and other countries but details on these businesses were scarce.

From left: Millennium Pan-Asia Hotel CEO Justin Xiao, Pagcor Chairman Andrea Domingo, and Pagcor President Alfredo Lim during the awarding of casino license in 2017.

 

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