Eyes on the IR prize: MGM reinforces commitment to Japan

Eyes on the IR prize: MGM reinforces commitment to Japan

Thursday, August 10, 2017 Posted by James Walker

MGM Resorts International has reinforced its commitment to the Japanese market by appointing Jason Hyland, former Charge d’Affaires for the United States Embassy Tokyo, as the representative officer and president of MGM Resorts Japan.

In addition to the appointment of the former diplomat, MGM said it would transfer several development specialists from the US to Japan, as it works to realise an integrated resort in the country.

The Las Vegas-based casino operator declared itself a candidate for a Japanese casino gaming licence long before the country’s government passed a bill to legalise resort-style gambling facilities in December last year.

Following the approval of an initial bill legalising integrated resorts at the conceptual level, lawmakers are now drafting a second piece of legislation – the IR Implementation Bill.

“Jason’s substantial experience as senior diplomat, his deep understanding of the Japanese culture, as well as his proven leadership, negotiation skills, extensive network and strong command of the Japanese language will be a tremendous asset as we promote activities in Japan,” said Jim Murren, chairman and CEO of MGM Resorts International

Since establishing Japanese subsidiaries in Tokyo and Osaka in 2014, MGM Resorts Japan has been providing information on integrated resorts (IR) to government, industry, and private entities, and will continue to build relationships and gather information on the domestic market.

To accommodate its expanding team, MGM Resorts Japan said it relocate its Tokyo office from Akasaka to Otemachi and will open a brand-new regional headquarters in the central business district on September 1, 2017.

The company also plans to open a new office in Osaka in the future.

“Opening a new office in the heart of Tokyo's business district and expanding our MGM Japan team reflect our strong commitment and determination,” said Ed Bowers, MGM Resorts Japan representative officer and CEO.

“The new office will become our core hub as our team advances toward the realisation of a resort that is uniquely Japanese.”

News of Hyland’s appointment came after MGM reported a 16.8% increase in revenues for the second quarter of the year. In the three months to June 30, revenues for the group totalled $2.6 billion, compared to $2.2 billion in the prior-year period.

Totally Gaming says: While no casino concessions have yet been allocated in Japan, MGM is setting out its stall as it looks to enter one of the world’s largest untapped gambling markets. The group will be hoping the appointment of Hyland and the relocation of its office to the Tokyo CBD will shine more favourable light on the operator. And with analysts predicting Japan’s two integrated resorts could generate annual revenues of $7 billion per year, it’s not hard to see why.

Hard Rock Hokkaido

Hard Rock details plans for integrated Japanese resort

American football

Caesars strikes New York and NFL deals


AGS agrees $49m acquisition of Integrity Gaming

Scientific Games

Scientific Games settles Shuffle Tech patent case

Gaming Products & Services Directory

The essential directory for the gaming industry