International edition
September 25, 2020

Although Adelson did not disclose details of the possible financing arrangement

Las Vegas Sands ready to restart Macau projects

(Macau / US).- Las Vegas Sands chief Sheldon Adelson has said he may have arranged financing necessary to restart stalled construction projects in Macau and the US by the end of 2009. The company, facing a credit crunch and a stock price in freefall, halted the building of two resorts in Macau in November as well as a condominium project in Las Vegas.

T

he Macau stoppage resulted in the loss of around 11,000 construction jobs in the former Portuguese colony, a Special Administrative Region in southern China neighboring Hong Kong that is now a casino hub.

However gaming tycoon Adelson said he was now confident that all of the Sands' stalled projects could resume. "I just came back from Macau and we have five or six different options that we can pursue, each one of which would solve our liquidity problems," Adelson told AFP.

"The best of the options out there would provide us with sufficient liquidity that we will restart all of our projects by the end of the year. "We will finish Bethlehem, we will finish Lots five and six (in Macau), and I don't know if I want to finish the condos in Vegas yet just because of the market."

LVS has charted an ambitious 12-billion-dollar building plan on an area of reclaimed land in Macau known as the Cotai Strip that, upon build-out, is slated to include 11 resorts with a collective 20,000 hotel rooms.

The Venetian Macao and Four Seasons Macau are open; Lots 5 and 6, which include Shangri-La and Sheraton-branded hotels, are under construction. The company also owns the Sands Macao, a casino-hotel on Macau's peninsula area where casinos have been clustered and where LVS' American rivals Wynn Resorts and MGM Mirage have opened properties in recent years.

The only US gaming corporation building on Cotai is LVS, although Wynn owns property in the region. Adelson did not disclose details of the possible financing arrangement, but gaming industry analyst Bill Lerner speculated it could involve selling existing assets or equity in the new projects.

"It suggests that there's a financial and/or construction partner that would take equity in sites 5 and 6," said Lerner, a former Deutsche Bank analyst now with his own firm, Union Gaming Group. "They will either sell the Sands Macao or some of the retail areas at the Four Seasons and Venetian Macao."

LVS stock has plummeted from a high of us$ 148 in October 2007 to a low of less than us$ 2 earlier this year, hovering above us$ 9 on Tuesday. Adelson was the third wealthiest American according to Forbes Magazine as recently as 2008 but fell to Number 178 this year as his personal wealth tumbled from us$ 28 billion in 2008 to us$ 3.4 billion this year.

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