company lawsuits

Enrique Razon slams ‘shameless’ lawsuit over scrapped casino deal

Ralf Rivas
Bloomberry says its chairman Enrique Razon Jr and his companies will 'vigorously oppose this shameless GGAM forum shopping and attempt to enforce an arbitral award'

Enrique Razon Jr’s Bloomberry Resorts Corporation called an asset management and gambling company “shameless” after it filed a lawsuit against him in the United States for terminating a casino deal.

Bloomberg on Tuesday, March 30, reported that Global Gaming Philippines (GGAM) sued Razon in a federal court in New York for scrapping a deal allowing the company to operate Bloomberry’s Solaire Resort and Casino in Parañaque City just 6 months after the project opened in 2013.

Bloomberry cut ties with the Las Vegas-based management services firm allegedly due to “material breach” of their agreement.

“GGAM has not spent any material time in attending to the management of Solaire and has failed to perform its obligations and deliverables under the [management services agreement],” Razon, chairman of Bloomberry, said back in 2013.

The suit claims that Razon is working to prevent GGAM from selling its rights in the project.

GGAM also accused Razon of allegedly concealing assets through shell companies to avoid payment resulting from arbitration.

The lawsuit aims to enforce a $296.6-million arbitral award by a Singapore court.

In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange on Wednesday, March 31, Bloomberry said GGAM was actively looking for a court to favor them.

“Mr. Razon (and the companies associated with him) will vigorously oppose this shameless GGAM forum shopping and attempt to enforce an arbitral award against those who are not a party to the arbitration,” Bloomberry said.

In February, the Singapore Court of Appeals favored GGAM, but Bloomberry argued that the arbitral award can only be enforced by a Philippine court. Bloomberry has already appealed the decision.

There is an ongoing case at the Makati City Regional Trial Court on GGAM trying to sell its shares in Bloomberry while the arbitration was pending. A writ of preliminary injunction was already issued by the court on the matter.

Razon’s camp said GGAM has also filed a similar suit in Hong Kong against Deutsche Bank to compel the release of the shares, which is the subject of the injunction by the Philippine court.

“GGAM had to ask the Hong Kong court to suspend the proceedings because of the subsisting Philippine court actions. GGAM had to pay the cost of Mr. Razon as the Hong Kong court considered GGAM’s implicating Mr. Razon there unwarranted,” Bloomberry said.

Shares of Bloomberry closed higher by 0.9% on Wednesday. – Rappler.com

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Ralf Rivas

A sociologist by heart, a journalist by profession. Ralf is Rappler's business reporter, covering macroeconomy, government finance, companies, and agriculture.