Melco Resorts Offering Employees 12 Months of Pay to Quit or Take Time Off

Posted on: May 4, 2021, 06:36h. 

Last updated on: May 4, 2021, 11:35h.

Melco Resorts is offering what seems too good to be true: a full year of pay for workers to quit.

Melco Resorts Macau China
A kitchen worker at City of Dreams in Macau is seen. Melco Resorts is offering its employees in the Chinese enclave substantial compensation packages if they’re willing to quit or take time off. (Image: Hospitality Technology)

The Hong Kong-headquartered casino operator that operates gaming resorts in Macau, the Philippines, and Cyprus has announced a voluntary exit program for its staff members who are interested in pursuing new opportunities. Called the “New Chapter,” the program offers employees 12 months of base pay — plus guaranteed tips for certain workers — if they’re willing to resign from their positions. 

A second initiative — titled “Thinking of You” — affords staff a monthly subsidy if they voluntarily take time off. For those who take Melco up on the offer and step aside from their positions for six to 12 months, they will receive a monthly salary equal to 40 percent of their full-time pay. For workers who take a leave of absence for 13 to 18 months, they will receive 55 percent of their base pay. 

During this special leave period, colleagues will not have to work for the company, but are able to work elsewhere and remain eligible for certain company benefits,” a release from Melco Resorts explained. “At the end of the special leave period, colleagues have the ability to return to perform their job for the company.”

Melco’s portfolio includes City of Dreams and Studio City in Macau, City of Dreams Manila in the Philippines, and the forthcoming City of Dreams Mediterranean in Cyprus. The casino firm additionally operates the non-gaming Altira Macau and eight Mocha Club electronic gaming venues in Macau and Cotai. 

Firing Difficult

During the pandemic, Macau, a Chinese Special Administrative Region, urged its six commercial casino license holders to retain their workforces. Casino gambling is the economic heartbeat of Macau, and the gaming industry is the enclave’s largest employer. 

In June of 2022, all six gaming concessions are set to expire. While each casino operator is expected to receive a fresh tender, the companies are doing all they can to improve their odds of retaining their gaming privileges in the world’s richest casino market. 

Melco isn’t the only casino company that is refraining from firing people but seeking to reduce its overhead in the months and years ahead. 

Last month, Galaxy Entertainment — another casino operator in Macau — unveiled its own voluntary exit scheme for certain workers. Galaxy is offering pit supervisors who resign a one-time payment of MOP380,000 (US$47,524). 

Ho Nicely Compensated

Melco Resorts reported a net loss of nearly $232 million in the first quarter of 2021. Despite ongoing difficult operating conditions, Melco announced in April that its founder and CEO was receiving stock compensation valued at approximately $10 million.

Lawrence Ho, estimated to have a net worth of $2.2 billion by Forbes, received 484,956 shares valued at $20.68, for a total award of a little more than $10 million.

The Melco board said the distribution “is for incentivizing and motivating him to strive for the future development of the Melco Resorts Group.”