Chow Tai Fook Enterprises
CLAIMS TO FAME
• Acquired Baha Mar casino resort in Bahamas from China state creditors
• Stakes in Vietnam and Australia IRs plus Macau’s SJM Holdings
POWER SCORE 885 LAST YEAR 37
The Cheng family has made good money from being good friends. In the 1980s, Stanley Ho asked patriarch Cheng Yu-tung to buy 10% of STDM, his Macau gaming and tourism vehicle, from an unwanted investor. Last year, when the Caribbean’s largest ever hospitality project, US$3.5 billion Baha Mar, was mired in bankruptcy amid allegations of substandard work by a China State Construction Engineering subsidiary, administrator and top creditor Import-Export Bank of China turned to the Cheng’s privately held Chow Tai Fook Enterprises (affiliated with but separate from the eponymous jewelry retailer).
Baha Mar extends a winning streak in gaming for Henry Cheng, family leader following his father’s passing in September last year. In 2015, CTFE acquired majority ownership of Vietnam’s US$4 billion Hoi An South Integrated Resort project, once a Genting investment and now dubbed Hoiana, with Suncity and local investor VinaCapital. Later that year, in Australia, it was part of Destination Brisbane’s winning bid, led by Star (then Echo) Entertainment, for an AU$3 billion (US$2.3 billion) riverfront IR in Queensland’s capital.
Still ramping up, Baha Mar gives the Chengs a chance to run their own casino resort. The family has already found synergy, placing a Rosewood Hotel from its New World Hospitality portfolio in each IR.
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