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MACAU BUSINESS


The land in Cotai is not that big, is it? The Cotai piece that we are looking at is about 18


acres [7 hectares]. Size is not determinative of success, either in Las Vegas or in Macau. The quality of the offering, the quality of the service, your location, all will speak to how you do financially. For example, MGM Macau is generating very strong


returns right now. It’s not the largest property in Macau but it has one of the largest individual market shares. It even has a larger share than many properties that are far bigger in terms of square footage, slots or tables. That speaks to a variety of important factors: the


quality of the resort, which I am extremely proud of; the quality of the service; our brand and brand awareness; and our marketing programmes, as we have been able to have a broader reach throughout China and throughout Asia.


We will be, hopefully, in a position to invest billions of dollars more into Macau in the form of infrastructure, which will employ thousands more people


It also speaks to our tremendous partner, Pansy Ho Chiu King. She has brought a tremendous amount of knowledge to us from a standpoint of design, development, marketing and operations. And Grant Bowie is the best chief executive officer in the market.


So size does not necessarily translate into financial


success and I think the same will be true in Cotai. The land we hope to be able to conclude with the


government is smaller than other parcels that other operators are trying to secure, but it is large enough to build everything that we would like to: a property that will be much bigger than MGM Macau and that will allow us to do more non-gaming development, which is what we are the best at in our industry.


Is everything ready in terms of design,


materials, contractors and so on? Nothing is ever done here. We design and change


throughout the process right up to the opening day. But we have determined the brand, the architects and the designers. We are very evolved in our design documents and have started our pre-opening marketing plans in terms of the customer reach that we are looking toward. We have also started talking to some of our main partners in entertainment and in food and beverage.


Any deals made yet? I’m not allowed at this point in time to divulge those details but we have had a tremendous amount


28 FEBRUARY 2012


of work done at the MGM China board level. We are very excited. It will be a very different property than the one we have. It will be complementary to what is already there in Cotai and also to what we imagine other people might be doing.


Measured growth Were you surprised with Melco Crown


Entertainment’s move on Macau Studio City? It’s a big piece of land. It’s well located and it has


tremendous potential. Studio City has been the source of a tremendous amount of consternation for the government and for other operators. I think the Melco Crown takeover provides a solution to that.


Were you surprised when secretary for economy and finance Francis Tam Pak Yuen announced the 3 percent cap on the growth of live gaming tables for the next 10 years starting in 2013? I don’t think “surprise” is the right word. The


government is taking great pains to be as transparent as possible, to be as clear to operators as possible. In my opinion, the Macau government is utterly


determined that the industry will grow in a very meaningful but measured way. It will attempt at all costs to avoid the pitfalls of hyper-growth, of over- extension in infrastructure, of labour, of prices and of capacity. The government understands what it has. It literally


has the world’s golden opportunity in what relates to gaming. It has only scratched the surface of what Macau can become in terms of the size of its gaming market. So the government is very focused on not going off track. That frustrates people because they want to know


with great certainty every element. When are land concessions going to be granted? When are the gaming concessions going to be extended? For how long will they be extended? Etcetera. That loses the forest for those trees. The forest is to make Macau an even more vibrant and much larger hospitality market. So, I don’t get sidetracked, surprised or concerned


about various interpretive intermediary comments by officials. I believe that I understand what the long- term vision is. We will be, hopefully, in a position to invest billions of dollars more into Macau in the form of infrastructure, which will employ thousands more people and that will continue to expand the tax revenues for the Macau government. I don’t think we will be restrained or impeded from doing that.


But is 3 percent the right growth rate? Would 5


percent be better? It’s a good idea right now to have a constraint or at


least an understanding of what the total table pool will be over a period of time. It doesn’t mean the pool can’t change, that regulations don’t evolve over time. We won’t have all the answers; neither will investors; neither will lenders – they just won’t. It’s not the way it’s going to be. Investors, lenders and operators are going to have to evaluate the business risk.


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