The government of Macau has reportedly refreshed the long-held license giving Macau Slot Company Limited the right to operate local instant lotteries and sports wagering for another three years.
According to a report from GGRAsia, the 36-month extension is to expire in June of 2024 although the company has conversely been stripped of a previous-held monopoly that had meant it was the sole entity permitted to offer residents of Macau instant lotteries and betting on soccer and basketball matches. The source detailed that this latter provision marks a significant policy shift and could indicate that the jurisdiction is open to making such licenses available to other such providers.
Macau Slot Company Limited is the trading name of Sociedade de Lotarias e Apostas Mutuas de Macau Lda and was reportedly granted the local monopoly on soccer-related sportsbetting in 1998. A similar license for horserace wagering is purportedly held by Macau Horse Racing Company Limited, which is responsible for the Macau Jockey Club venue, while the former firm’s purview was extended to professional basketball at the turn of the millennium.
In its report on the matter and Inside Asian Gaming divulged that the new license for Macau Slot Company Limited is an extension to its 2016 authorization and may be further prolonged come mid-2024 should the city’s government agree. However, this source explained that the authorization could equally be immediately cancelled by the former Portuguese enclave’s Chief Executive should the operator be unable to retain its workforce, which is a stipulation thought to specifically relate to its local employees.
Macau Slot Company Limited reportedly chalked up a profit of $19.3 million for the whole of 2019, which was a decline of 30% year-on-year, while its new license contains a clause that would allow it to ‘organize and operate other forms of lotteries or mutual betting’ pending approval from the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau regulator.
Although Macau Slot Company Limited has held a license for many years, its annual gross gaming revenues have long reportedly equated to just a fraction of the city’s overall gambling receipts. GGRAsia cited information from the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau in disclosing that the company’s tally for the whole of 2020 purportedly hit just $67.9 million to represent a mere 0.89% of the combined total of about $7.6 billion.
Respected gaming analyst David Green reportedly told the Macau News Agency that the over 40 casinos in Macau could now be potentially offered the chance to diversify their offerings and sources of revenue by being allowed to join Macau Slot Company Limited in offering some form of sportsbetting. The former Donaco International Limited, Silver Heritage Group Limited and PricewaterhouseCoopers executive purportedly declared that permitting such venues to get into sports wagering would furthermore ‘have the benefit of encouraging people to stay longer’ and prompt punters to ‘find their way to casino games during extended breaks in play.’