The winning bid for Genting’s prime Miami real estate could be one that hit almost $1.5 billion – a potential record for this kind of sale.
A Bloomberg article detailed that there was a total of 5 offers exceeding $1 billion. The bids were international, with a variety of plans for the future of the waterfront land – from high-end condos or office spaces to situating an entertainment destination there. The Malaysian gambling giant hasn’t announced a final decision yet; however, it was reported that three candidates would be shortlisted before that comes to fruition.
Genting Ready for a Large Profit
Genting’s Miami property sale could be finalized within weeks. The Malaysian operator started marketing their decision to sell the 16 acres of prime real estate back in November 2022, so attracting five bids over $1 billion is an achievement in and of itself. The parcel was home to the Miami Morning Herald newspaper and sits across Miami Beach on Biscayne Bay.
The decision to sell, however, follows a failed push to legalize non-tribal casinos in Florida. As such, Genting is reportedly going to use the proceeds from the sale to fund its casino expansion into New York and further expand its extensive Las Vegas offerings. The operator at potentially very sizable profit from the sale. The land was originally purchased for $236 million in 2011.
Genting’s international status could also potentially enable the operator to distribute the sale profits across markets other than the US. However, such a decision would be motivated very differently. The Genting Casino Nottingham was closed recently, mainly due to “commercial considerations.” The operator didn’t win a Macau concession, so prospects for that market would also require further investment.
And so, although the company’s intentions to use the proceeds from the sale to further strengthen its positions in New York and Las Vegas date a few months back, this is still the more likely option. Other operators have been pouring money into their Macau businesses such as Wynn or MGM, but both won their concession bids, and Genting doesn’t have one.
Eyeing a New York Casino License
Another reason to look to New York specifically is that after Genting’s Macau push didn’t bear fruit during the concession renewal bids, the state has an ongoing bidding war over three new licenses. The competition is expected to be fierce, though, as two of the three licenses are expected to go to racing casinos, potentially leaving only one city casino license available.
The bidding process is run by the New York Gaming Facility Location Board, which said in January that it would not be imposing artificial deadlines due to the complexity of the process. While the state is looking to cash in more gaming tax revenue, the application fees themselves are at $500 million per applicant. So, that’s already a not-insignificant investment just for the attempt.
Genting operates Resorts World which sits close to the Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens. The operator’s plans for expanding the slot-machine facility with a hotel, resort, and casino, could potentially cost more than $1 billion, so the Miami property sale could fill in a big chunk of that investment, or cover all its license application costs and leave some change.