The groundbreaking ceremony was graced by PAGCOR Chairman and CEO Andrea Domingo, PAGCOR President and COO Alfredo Lim, directors Reynaldo Concordia and Gabriel Claudio. Also in the event were Udenna Corp.’s chairman and CEO Dennis Uy, Lapu- Lapu City Mayor Paz Radaza and officers of Udenna Corp.

Davao eyes IPO or backdoor listing for Cebu casino
(The Philippine Star) - December 17, 2017 - 4:00pm

MANILA, Philippines — Davao-based businessman Dennis Uy may embark on an initial public offering (IPO) or a backdoor listing for his planned casino in Cebu.

Nothing is final yet but Udenna Corp. hopes to start construction soon, according to Raymundo Martin Escalona, director for special projects of Udenna, Uy’s holding company.

“We’re waiting for the ECC (Environmental Clearance Certificate) before we can do initial excavation. We’re told the ECC will hopefully be out before Christmas because we complied, we submitted everything,” Escalona said.

Escalona said the company may launch an IPO to fund the project.

“We have the option. We are looking at an IPO or backdoor listing,” Escalona said.

Udenna, through its wholly owned subsidiary Udenna Development Corp., is building the $341 million Emerald Resort and Casino, which will rise on a 12.5-hectare prime beachfront property in Mactan Island in Lapu-Lapu City.

Udenna held the groundbreaking ceremony on July 26, with Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor) chairman and CEO Andrea Domingo gracing the occasion.

Escalona said the company has yet to decide if it would operate the casino itself or tap a partner to operate it.

“We’re weighing whether in fact we’ll get an operator or run it ourselves,” he said.

For the manpower, he said this would not be difficult because there are a lot of talent and resources from gaming sites such as Macau or Las Vegas.

“There are a lot of very talented people,” he said.

For the hotel component, this would be run by Enderun Colleges which has a hotel management team.

The casino is targeting both foreign and local players including Singaporeans, Koreans and Chinese.

“There’s a huge Korean market already in Mactan. That will be a natural market because they currently go to Cebu,” he said.

Mactan has become a premier tourist destination, seeing a surge of investments but keeping enough room for further development in the coming years.

“Lapu-Lapu Leisure Mactan aims to become a key economic growth driver in Central Visayas by creating thousands of jobs and small-business opportunities aside from supporting the government’s community development programs,” Uy said when he announced the project.

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