MGM Resorts is set to become the first international operator to formally enter into a consortium in pursuit of a Japan IR license after partnering with Japanese leasing giant Orix.
Orix said on Friday that it would enter a consortium deal with MGM as equal partners with an eye on the development and operation of an IR in Osaka.
The Nikkei quoted Orix CEO Makoto Inoue as stating, “We are considering teaming up with MGM” for business operations in Osaka. This is the first major Japanese domestic company to throw its hat in the ring for an IR.
According to Orix, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed by the two companies in late 2018.
Operation of the IR will be undertaken by the consortium, while casino operations will be handled by MGM. Orix has also approached numerous Kansai companies to participate in this consortium.
MGM Chairman and CEO Jim Murren announced an “Osaka First” policy at the beginning of this year with regards to an IR bid for the city in 2024. At a press conference in Tokyo last week he doubled down on that bid, stating, “We want to build IR in Yumeshima, Osaka. We want to work with local business to build an IR unique to Japan so that the world will know what this country has to offer.”
As previously reported by IAG, Murren expects to learn whether the company’s Japan bid has been successful by this time next year.