LVS blames AAEC for failed partnership on Macau casino licence

AAEC is demanding compensation of at least US$7.5bn from LVS.
AAEC is demanding compensation of at least US$7.5bn from LVS.

Luís Cavaleiro de Ferreira, LVS’s attorney, told the court that AAEC was to blame for its failed tie-up with the US-based company to gain a casino licence.

Macau.- The legal battle between Las Vegas Sands (LVS) and Asian American Entertainment Co Ltd (AAEC) goes on and this time it was the turn of LVS to make its statement. Luís Cavaleiro de Ferreira, representing Las Vegas Sands, told Macau’s Court of First Instance that Marshall Hao Shi-Sheng, AAEC’s CEO, refused to extend a letter of intent beyond January 15, 2002 to bind Asian American Entertainment and the US conglomerate to exclusive negotiations.

LVS’s lawyer claimed that AAEC was the first to break up the partnership and trade with rivals including Hong Kong entrepreneur Lui Che Woo. The lawyer also denied the other party’s claim that Las Vegas Sands gave Lui’s Galaxy Casino SA access to confidential bidding documents prepared by Asian American Entertainment. 

He said the final bid, which originally combined the capabilities of Las Vegas Sands and Galaxy Casino SA, was based entirely on the US group’s resort business model for the Venetian Las Vegas casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Cavaleiro de Ferreira stressed that AAEC’s own Macau bid ended up with the lowest score in a tender process held by Macau authorities, and suggested that even if Sands ended up as its partner, the Taiwanese group would not win the Macau concession.

AAEC initiated its lawsuit against LVS in 2012. It argues that LVS breached its contract for a casino licence in Macau in 2002 when the US operator switched partners, teaming up with Hong Kong’s Galaxy Entertainment.

AAEC is demanding compensation of at least US$7.5bn to cover lost profits. Jorge Menezes, AAEC attorney, made the plea said the proposed amount is “based on fairness and discretion”. AAEC had originally sued Las Vegas Sands for over US$12m.

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