Razon sells 350 million shares in Solaire operator

MANILA, Philippines – Billionaire businessman Enrique Razon Jr has successfully raised P3.8 billion from the overnight placement of 350 million shares in leisure and gaming firm Bloomberry Resorts Corporation priced at P10.85 per share.

Bloomberry told the stock exchange that Prime Metroline Holdings Incorporated, the holding company and controlling shareholder of Bloomberry, sold 350 million shares representing a 3.18% stake in the gaming firm that owns and operates Solaire Resort & Casino.

The shares were placed to international institutional investors at an 8% discount to the volume weighted average price on Monday, September 11.

Prime Metroline will remain as the largest shareholder with 65.58% of the company's shares after the transaction.

"I am very confident of the prospects for Bloomberry. I believe that the increased liquidity in the stock will be beneficial for investors and the company," Razon said.

Goldman Sachs (Singapore) Pte was the sole placement agent for the transaction.

The share price of Bloomberry has risen significantly for the past few months on strong performance of the company.

Strong performance

For the first half of the year, Bloomberry reported a 24-fold surge in its income, or to a record P4.1 billion from only P174 million in the same period a year ago – due to  all-time high gaming revenues.

For the second quarter alone, Bloomberry’s net net income jumped 47% to P1.95 billion versus P1.33 billion in the same quarter last year due to a 34% increase in profitability in its Philippine operations, and lower losses from its Korean gaming operations under Jeju Hotel and Casino.

Gross gaming revenues rose by 14% quarter-on-quarter to P12.22 billion – the highest since opening Solaire in March 2013 – on better relations between the Philippines and China.

Bloomberry achieved a strong first half performance despite increased competition from Okada Manila, which opened in December 2016, the third integrated resort and casino operating in the government-sponsored Pagcor Entertainment City.

Aside from Solaire Resorts and Casino, Bloomberry is also set to develop by next year its second casino and leisure project in a 1.56-hectare property within Vertis North in Quezon City. – Rappler.com