House of Cards®


Native American Casinos Eye Japan, Ignore Chief Wahoo At Home by Muhammad Cohen

Japan’s upper legislative house has passed gaming addiction legislation and begun debate on the Integrated Resort Implementation Bill, the final step for casino legalization in the world’s third largest economy. If the bill passes, the real fun starts, as localities and companies begin jockeying for one of three licenses to construct what will undoubtedly rank among the world’s most expensive and unique casino resorts.

Japanese pachinko moguls Hajime Satomi and Kazuo Okada have been waiting for this moment all of their business lives. Satomi’s Sega Sammy owns 45% of Paradise City, South Korea’s first integrated resorts, opened in April last year in partnership with Korea’s top foreign casino operator Paradise Group at Korea’s international gateway Incheon airport. Universal Entertainment founder Okada, the former Wynn Resorts vice chairman, opened Okada Manila in December 2016, featuring the world’s largest dancing fountain. After ousting Okada from management last year, Universal seemingly has recommitted to the Philippine resort by hiring a new chief operating officer. Many experts believe Japanese companies with IR experience hold valuable cards in the competition for a license.


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