Tom Moester is Mediatech Solutions’ head of Asia Pacific, where he is responsible for the growth of the provider’s gaming platform in land-based, online and omni-channel gaming operations, as well as its consulting activities across the region.
Tom previously held positions in the Dutch Ministry of Finance and strategic consultancy, and has vast experience in government regulation and business development.
When you think of the Asian gambling industry, you think of the bright lights and towering casino resorts of Macau.
And while China is certainly the largest gambling market in the region, other jurisdictions are starting to come to the fore with new opportunities for operators and suppliers looking to enter the fray, particularly online.
In recent months, Cambodia has emerged as an area of interest after the Ministry of Economy and Finance, which regulates the gambling industry, dished out ten new casino resort licenses with the majority set to be built in the port town of Sihanoukville.
The new permits will take the total number of licensed gambling operators in Cambodia to 75, with those currently up and running focussing their business on Phnom Penh, the country’s capital city.
The licences cover around 7,660 slots machines and 2,600 table games across the region with the industry showing signs of growth – in 2013, casino and gambling taxes totalled USD$22m but last year the amount increased to $34m.
The new licences provide an opportunity for those looking to get in on the action – so long as they understand the gaming industry in Cambodia and how it works.
Every region has a power player, and Cambodia is no different.
The Naga Corp has been granted a monopoly licence to operate casinos within a 200km radius of Phnom Penh until 2035.
The firm is the largest hotel, gaming and leisure operator in Cambodia, and is the country’s only publicly listed company – it’s shares began trading on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange back in 2007.
It’s clear, then, that Naga Corp has a stranglehold on the immediate region surrounding the capital – particularly via its flagship Naga World integrated resort with consistently strong results – but opportunities still exist across the country.