IPI still seeking investors to fund Garapan casino reopening

IPI still seeking investors to fund Garapan casino reopening

The majority owner of Imperial Pacific International has said the company hopes to find a new investor who can help it reopen its Garapan casino resort.

Northern Mariana Islands.- Cui Lijie, the majority owner of Imperial Pacific International (IPI), says she is seeking new investors to help reopen the operator’s Garapan casino resort. In an interview with Mariana’s Variety, she admitted that investor interest had fallen off due to negative stories about IPI but said the company was doing all it can to improve the situation.

Lijie noted that IPI has spent more than US$20m to settle lawsuits filed by former vendors and employees. She added that the company wants to meet its obligations to the government but that it believed the government should also acknowledge that IPI has not earned any revenue for the past three years due to its casino’s closure amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Lijie said IPI could help promote the islands in Japan and South Korea once it is able to move forward with its casino business.

Earlier this month, the Commonwealth Casino Commission (CCC) chairman Edward C. Deleon Guerrero said that IPI owes over US$55.4m in unpaid licence and regulatory fees. It has not paid its fees since its casino closed in 2020.

Meanwhile, Clear Management, the court-appointed receiver in charge of selling off IPI’s gaming equipment, is awaiting the release of more than US$35,000 in commissions earned from its latest auctions of the casino operator’s gaming equipment,

Last May, IPI reported that it had signed a memorandum of agreement with South Korea’s IH Group to secure funding to help it reopen its casino in Garapan and pay some of its obligations, including payroll and outstanding payables to vendors. However, so far there has been no news regarding the agreement.

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