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Sands China remains solid after Adelson’s passing away

The transition at Sands has been well planned, observers say.
The transition at Sands has been well planned, observers say.

Analysts believe major changes are unlikely following to the founder’s death since the transition had been well-anticipated and planned.

Macau.- Las Vegas Sands’ chairman and chief executive Sheldon Adelson passed away on Tuesday at the age of 87 but experts agree that the news will not have a major impact on the management or long-term strategy of Sands China.

Sands China employees paid their respects to the company’s founder with a minute’s silence on Wednesday while condolence messages were posted on electronic signage outside its Macau resorts.

Analysts believe major changes at the company are unlikely since the transition has been well-anticipated and planned.

David Green, principal at Newpage Consulting, told MNA: “He has had stable management in place for some years in all of the geographically diverse operations of the group.”

Analysts with Sanford C. Bernstein agreed: “We see company management well-positioned to maintain the broad strategy that has been in place.

“With long-term Sands Executive, Rob Goldstein, who has been with the company since 1995 and became Acting CEO and Chairman of both LVS and Sands China last week, the company remains in solid hands.”

The casino tycoon had recently taken leave of absence to undergo cancer treatment for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

COO Rob Goldstein stepped in as acting chairman and CEO. Chief financial officer, Grant Chum Kwan Lock, was also appointed as an executive director of Sands China.

Sands China’s future

No long before Adelson’s death the market was buzzing with rumours about the possibility that Sands might sell its Las Vegas Strip assets to focus on its Asian business in Macau and Singapore.

After Adelson’s death, his family retains control of nearly 57 per cent of Las Vegas Sans. Adelson’s wife, Dr. Miriam Adelson, was left in control of a large bulk of Las Vegas Sands’ shares through several trusts.

The chief financial officer of LVS, Adelson’s son-in-law Patrick Dumont, is also expected to gain more influence in the gaming group’s operations, Bernstein said.

Ben Lee, managing partner at iGamiX told MNA: “What will ultimately emerge will depend very much on whether Adelson’s widow, Miriam, wants to take over the reins of the company.

“There is a possibility that the time may be right to divest and most likely to China-linked interests, to preserve their chances of getting a new Macau concession.”

Sands China had reported an 82 per cent year-on-year drop in net revenues to US$586m, with US$731m in net losses.

But in a statement made for the latest financial report, Adelson said he believed the recovery process in each of Sands’ markets would continue and that the group had enough financial strength to support for its previously announced capital expenditure programs in both Macau and Singapore.

In this article:
land-based casino Sands China Sheldon Adelson