When the Wakayama Prefectural Government announced the participants in its RFP process, there were surprisingly only two company names on the list—Suncity Group and Clairvest Group. Suncity had previously made clear that it intends to be an IR operator in Japan, but Clairvest had previously indicated that its intention was to participate as a key investor in a consortium led by another operator.
Clairvest Vice Chairman and Managing Director Jeff Parr has clarified his firm’s intentions in a statement to Asia Gaming Brief.
“Clairvest will be the lead investor and with its very successful experience in over thirty gaming businesses, including regional IRs around the globe. Clairvest will act as the quarterback for the RFP response; bringing together leading MICE operators, gaming operators, hospitality, and entertainment operators, as well as world leading responsible gaming through its partnership with the Responsible Gambling Council to ensure the RFP response for Wakayama will meet and indeed exceed the requirements of Wakayama and the central government of Japan,” his statement said.
He added, “Clairvest’s sterling regulatory and successful business track record of successful partnerships has already attracted interest from many Japanese enterprises and individuals who would like to provide products and services to the Clairvest Wakayama IR team, and indeed become material investors, such that Clairvest currently believes that the IR consortium that is assembled will be world class and at least 50 percent owned by Japanese nationals.”
Clairvest also communicated that it intends to make an IR bid in Wakayama separately from that of the Suncity Group, but that its prospective IR operator consortium partner was not in a position, in the midst of the global Covid-19 pandemic, to lead the bid at this time. Thus Clairvest has stepped forward as “quarterback” to hold the consortium’s place for the RFP process.