Japan must compete on quality, rather than price, if it is to become a destination of choice in the increasingly competitive Asian gaming and leisure market, according to leading regional IR operator Galaxy Entertainment Group.
Providing some insight into Galaxy’s Japan strategy during a presentation at the 1st Japan IR Expo 2019 in Osaka on Wednesday, Galaxy’s Chief Operating Officer for Japan Development Ted Chan said any Japanese IR the company develops would primarily target a higher class of customer, which he described as essential to overcome Japan’s particularly tight regulations.
“With strong regional competition, high taxation and entry fees for locals, operating under such a strong regulatory framework means it will be essential for us to focus on quality not price,” Chan said.
“That’s good for Japan because it is something Galaxy and our partners, Monaco SBM, do very well.
“The Japan opportunity is not solely mass market but affluent middle class who are higher spending and more sophisticated in their tastes.
“We call them premium mass travellers – the same tourists that are driving the success of Galaxy Entertainment Group, and of Macau and Singapore.”
While Galaxy has yet to narrow down its Japanese IR hopes to a single location, Chan did say that the company would be “actively participating in Osaka’s RFC (Request for Concept) process in the coming weeks” after the city and prefecture launched the RFC process on 25 April.
Operators have until 24 May to confirm their participation in the RFC (Request for Concept) process, whose submission deadline is expected to be in August.
“We look forward to the announcement of the full regulatory framework that will precede the full RFP process in the next year,” Chan said.