Bally’s Corp seeks to enter Japan IR contest with casino resort in Fukuoka

Host cities and prefectures have until April to submit their final integrated resort proposals.
Host cities and prefectures have until April to submit their final integrated resort proposals.

The US company wants to develop an integrated resort in the city of Fukuoka, Japan’s sixth-largest city.

Japan.- A new city could enter the contest to develop an integrated resort in Japan. The US-based Bally’s Corp has revealed it wants to develop an integrated resort in Fukuoka, on the northern shore of Japan’s Kyushu Island. That would mean a fourth location joining Nagasaki, Osaka and Wakayama in a contest for up to three IR licences.

Bally said it has plans for a JPY480m (US$3.9bn) IR that would include 2,000 hotel rooms and a 15,000-square-meter (161,459-square-foot) casino. It said the complex could serve about 4.6 million customers a year, most of them domestic, with an estimated annual gross profit of JPY71bn.

Christopher Jewett, vice president of corporate development at Bally’s said: “The project can raise the stature of this historic region into a truly international destination in keeping with its long and rich heritage.”

The city and prefecture of Fukuoka have not announced their intention to host one of Japan’s first casino resorts. Business groups in Kyushu and other local governments are already backing Nagasaki’s IR bid.

Jewett said Bally’s was aware that cities and prefectures interested in developing an integrated resort have until April 28 2022 to submit their final project proposals but he said: “There’s the possibility that after the national government assesses the initial round of proposals, that it will choose to reopen the bidding process.”

However, the mayor of Fukuoka has reportedly said he is not interested in hosting IRs in the metropolis.

Wakayama City Council gives first OK to IR bid

The Wakayama City Council has voted to give its approval for an application to be submitted to the national government for an integrated casino resort. 

The Wakayama prefectural council must also approve the urban plan before it can be submitted. So far, a prefectural special committee has approved the plans.

The prefecture’s chosen private sector partner, Clairvest Neem Ventures, will raise JPY470bn (US$4.09bn) to invest in the integrated resort, which the prefectural government hopes will be open by 2026.

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