am Man Pou, Chairman of AERL said, "I am most delighted to see the rapid growth of the group and witness this important moment. Nourished and founded in Macau, we are honored to become the first VIP Gaming Promotion Company to be listed on this global market. Thanks to the opening up of the entertainment and gaming industries and favorable government policies, we gradually grew from a local company to a NASDAQ listed company. Riding on the rapid economic growth of Macau, we envisioned and seized the opportunity to set foot on the international market."
Since the return of sovereignty to China in 1999, the Macau government is determined to turn Macau into a destination for regional tourism, leisure gaming, convention and exhibition with international appeal. From 2002 to 2009, number of casinos increased from 11 to 33 and gaming tables also grew from 339 to 4,770. As of 31 December 2009, gross revenue of Games of Fortune reached us$ 14.8 billion.
Gaming revenue of Macau, for the period ended 30 June 2010, grew by 67% compared with that of the same period last year. From 2002 to 2009, visitor arrivals to Macau drastically increased and the number of Mainland visitors rose from around 4,000,000 to over 10,000,000. The increasing number of visitors has paved a solid foundation for the entertainment business.
Lam concluded, "Listed on the NASDAQ Market is a key milestone for us. I truly believe that we would not have achieved today's results without the favorable government policies and the hard work of the people of Macau. Our successful NASDAQ listing has not only enhanced AERL's capital base, it also enlarges the potential shareholder base. We are committed to investing in the future growth of our business. We will continue to strive for better results and take our group to the next phase of growth very soon."
The unaudited turnover for the first half of 2010 was us$ 4.342 billion, up 160% year-over-year, compared to us$ 1.672 billion for the same period of 2009.