Melco completes equity interest acquisition in Cyprus project

Melco International Development has announced the completion of the acquisition for 75% equity interest in the Cyprus project.

Cyprus.- Melco Resorts & Entertainment Limited has announced the completion of its acquisition from Melco International of all of its holding of ordinary shares of ICR Cyprus Holdings Limited. The company has announced the interest in acquiring the 75% earlier this year.

The Acquisition Shares from Melco represents a 75% equity interest in ICR Cyprus. ICR Cyprus and its subsidiaries are developing the City of Dreams Mediterranean integrated destination resort project in Cyprus. The facility is currently under development and scheduled to open in 2021. Once it opens, it will be the largest and premier integrated destination resort in Europe.

Melco acquired the Acquisition Shares in exchange for 55.5 million ordinary shares of Melco Shares. As reported by the company, these are equivalent to €330 million. A special committee of independent directors formed by the company’s Board of Directors to consider the acquisition unanimously approved the transaction.

The company pushed the opening date

The first IR in Europe was supposed to open its doors by the summer of 2021 but the date was pushed to the end of that year. Last month, Integrated Casino Resort Cyprus (ICR) reported that Avax-Terna won the tender for the construction of the IR. While construction began last month, and despite the request for it to be ready within 24 months, it seems like the extensive infrastructure required for the facility won’t allow this to happen.

A source close to the project told Phileleftheros that the original design of the IR suffered minor changes. This was reportedly because there were concerns around the layout of the casino’s premises. They also expanded infrastructure, increased the number of guest rooms and added more gaming area. The changes made to the infrastructure push the cost of the investment way higher than the €550 million originally estimated. However, Melco Resorts is yet to address if this will change its overall plans for the facility.

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