The family of Macau gaming pioneer Stanley Ho is at risk of losing its Portuguese casino concessions after a re-tender for gaming licenses saw a rival bidder submit a higher offer.
According to a report by Bloomberg, the license to operate two of Portugal’s biggest casinos – Casino de Lisboa in Lisbon and Casino do Estoril in Cascais – expires at the end of December with the Ho family one of two companies to submit bids for a new 15-year concession.
It is unclear who the competing bidder is, however Estoril Sol SGPS SA, which counts the Ho family as its main shareholder and Pansy Ho as its Chairperson, said in a filing this week that “the competing offer had a higher value than the offer presented by our own subsidiary.”
Estoril Sol’s 57.8% controlling stake is held by Finansol, a subsidiary of Sociedade de Turismo e Diversões de Macau, SA (STDM) that was listed on the Euronext exchange in February 1986. STDM is also controlling shareholder in Macau concession holder SJM Resorts – operator of Grand Lisboa and Grand Lisboa Palace, among others.
Estoril Sol, which aside from its two large casinos in and around Lisbon also operates the smaller Casino da Povoa plus online gaming and sports betting, reported revenue of €133 million (US$132 million) in 2021, Bloomberg said.