Why Genting Will Not Win Sentosa
Sticking my neck out here but am pretty confident now that Kerzner will get the Sentosa IR project ahead of Genting. Let's look at Genting's bid details:
- partnering Star Cruises and Universal Parks
- build a Universal Studios theme park to draw 5m visitors a year with 16 new/unique rides
- new rides based on King Kong and Madagascar, Revenge of the Mummy and Waterworld
- larger than the one in Hollywood with room for expansion
- plenty of shade structures in keeping with the sunny weather
- some additional juice based on Universal's relations with NBC but no details as yet
The trouble with Genting's bid:
- another theme park thing, theme park thing is so 90s
- it's Universal but not Disney, and what if Nusajaya gets Disney (its a longshot but still a possibility)
- theme parks and fun rides does not add much "real value" to kids
After Marina has been awarded, the Sentosa IR would have to be awarded on being a different IR, no point having same IR. The Sentosa IR has to be more focused towards family and kids and less towards MICE. Marina is city casino while Sentosa is a resort based casino. Whoever wins Sentosa has to be different and offer different things than Sands.
Looking at Kerzner's bid yesterday, the advantage goes to Kerzner. Here are the details:
- partnership with Discovery Channel, MTV and Nickelodeon
- 34 f&b outlets with internally recognised chefs such as Gordon Ramsay and Nobu
- its the seaworld concept and will be called Atlantis Sentosa
- teamed up with Capitaland
- clearly targets 4 age groups: "under 3", 4-8, 13-18 and adults
- Kerzner's Discovery Kid's Camp in the Bahamas, a jv with Discovery Channel, will be a trump card
- the resort design will be led by Frank Gehry, this looks to be another trump card for Kerzner as it plays on Singapore's feelings of inadequacy. Singapore has made it as a developed financial center, with very high GDP per capita, and some of the priciest real estate. Singapore can get the best entertainment and shows and artists to perform in the island state, it tries to buy and import some culture, and a building by a renowned architect is lacking in Singapore. All major cities have their IM Peis and Gehrys, so to have a Gehry designed building is like having a Dali or Picasso masterpiece in the real world.
Looking at the price jumps, investors seem to have factored in a 70% chance that Genting will get Sentosa IR. Not going to happen.