The parent company of Best Sunshine International Ltd. has been allowed to bring in an outside investor for its $7.1-billion integrated casino development project on Saipan.
According to GRRAsia, an online newsletter about the casino industry in Asia, Imperial Pacific International Holdings Ltd. can now offer other investors up to 49 percent of the issued share capital of the company, based on a company filing with the Hong Kong Stock Exchange last Wednesday.
The CNMI Lottery Commission awarded Best Sunshine an exclusive Saipan casino license last July 15. A little less than a month later, on Aug. 13, the two parties entered into an agreement that stated that any change of 10 percent or more in the “total equity, control, or shares of the company” would be deemed a “license transfer” and would need “express written authorization” of the casino commission.
Wednesday’s filing said that “on Nov. 19, 2014, the parties have entered into a written amendment to the casino licence agreement such that the restriction is no longer applicable,” adding that the current controlling shareholder of Imperial Pacific is Inventive Star Ltd., said the GRRAsia report.
The latest filing, the website also reported, said that the board of Imperial Pacific would use “its best efforts to procure that Inventive Star does not reduce its shareholding in the issued share capital of the company to less than 51 percent during the term of the casino resort developer licence.”
Speaking before the Saipan Chamber of Commerce general membership meeting earlier this month, BSI senior vice president for corporate marketing Jacqueline Wu said the company is planning to construct 4,200 hotel rooms and 300 villas on the island.
Aside from the over 4,000 rooms, BSI’s current plan involves construction of a 600-seat theater, a 10,000-square-meter casino floor, 10,000-square-meter retail area, over 20 F&B outlets, and a theme park.
The BSI executive also said that with the increased number of hotel rooms comes the increase in jobs needed for the $7.1-billion development. She said the company is expected to employ as much as 9,000 people for the project, up from the original estimates of 5,000.
In an interview last week, BSI president and CEO Mark A. Brown said the company is now currently working with Department of Public Lands Secretary Pete A. Tenorio to identify public lands for its project.
He said because of the size of the investment, BSI is looking at a mix of public and private land around Saipan.
BSI is also expected to open a new office at the Marianas Business Plaza to augment its current office operations on the third floor of the Bank of Guam building in Garapan.
The company has made its presence felt on Saipan the past month with the release of $10 million in utility vouchers to residential customers of the Commonwealth Utilities Corp. It also launched an initiative called “Best Sunshine’s Beautification Campaign” that is centered on sustaining the islands’ premier economic engine: tourism.