Las Vegas Sands Could Increase Casino Space in Singapore

Posted on: May 30, 2024, 10:13h. 

Last updated on: May 31, 2024, 09:10h.

Las Vegas Sands (NYSE: LVS) could boost the square footage devoted to the casino at its Marina Bay Sands integrated resort in Singapore as part of previously announced expansion plans for the venue.

Marina Bay Sands, cheating, Tan Kian Yi, baccarat
Singapore’s iconic Marina Bay Sands. Operator Las Vegas Sands could add a new entertainment and gaming venue there. (Image: STB)

Later this year, the operator is expected to divulge more details on what could be a $7.5 billion expansion of Marina Bay Sands. However, some press reports indicate the added casino space could come in the form of another venue intended to complement the established resort.

Sands is planning a fourth tower at the iconic venue in the city-state. That addition won’t include another casino, but other reports indicate Sands could add space to the current gaming area at MBS.

Speaking at a Wednesday investor conference, Sands CEO Rob Goldstein said the new Singapore project will feature fewer rooms than MBS, but will have a gaming area and space for live entertainment. MBS, which is the most valuable casino brand in the world, is one of two integrated resorts in Singapore. The other is Genting’s Resorts World Sentosa.

Singapore, which has famously confined its gaming landscape to the Sands/Genting duopoly, is permitting the operators to modestly expand in the name of attracting more affluent, non-mass-market tourists to the country. The new entertainment venue would aim to attract marquee acts from the US and Asia.

Sands Smart to Pursue Singapore Casino Expansion

For Sands, it’s prudent to not only add to Marina Bay Sands, but to capitalize on other expansion opportunities in Singapore — the company’s lone operating market outside of Macau.

MBS is one of the crown jewels of the Asia-Pacific gaming scene and enhancements are necessary to keep pace in an increasingly competitive environment. It’s one of the most profitable casino hotels in the world with a knack for luring well-heeled customers from across Asia. The operator is expected to break ground on MBS expansion next year and could wrap up the effort by 2029.

At the investor conference, Goldstein noted that it’s possible that Singapore’s gross gaming revenue (GGR)  could top $7 billion this year before ascending to $10 billion over the next several years.

Marina Bay Sands is an essential part of Singapore’s business and leisure travel industries, and Sands benefits from its presence there. In 2022, the city ranked ninth in the world in terms of tourism spending, according to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).

Singapore Growth Spurt

In the Asia-Pacific gaming scene, all markets are dwarfed by Macau, but Singapore’s ascent is impressive, particularly when considering that rise is driven by just two venues.

Singapore is going through a growth spurt,” said Goldstein at the investor conference. “All of a sudden Singapore’s become a hugely important market.”

Should MBS and Resorts World Sentosa eventually combine for $10 billion in GGR, that would make Singapore the world’s third-largest casino market by that metric after Macau and Nevada.