The Philippines’ Richest Man Eyeing the Casino Industry

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It’s well-known that the Philippines’ casino industry is thriving. This country’s gaming market is growing faster than some of the world’s top gambling hubs, and big names are starting to become interested. This week, the Philippines’ richest man announced that he’s interested in getting into this lucrative industry.

The fact that such a powerful individual wants to enter the casino game proves how quickly it’s growing. We’re going to take a look at why Manuel Villar is determined to join this industry. Later, we’ll discuss whether or not this businessman will actually be granted permission to do so.

Casino Industry in the Philippines Growing Bigger Than Anyone Expected

The Philippines’ casino industry is growing to become one of the biggest in the world. This wasn’t always the case though. For many years, the government here implemented strict regulations on the gambling industry that made it very difficult for casinos to grow.

Lawmakers in this country cannot agree on gambling. President Rodrigo Duterte has famously claimed to “hate gambling,” despite the valuable revenue it brings to the economy. PAGCOR, the Philippines’ gambling regulatory body, is pushing for casino expansion.

Duterte’s efforts to stop gambling activities have not been successful. The casino industry here is growing faster than ever. Last week, reports came out that show this country’s gaming market is now competing with Macau and Las Vegas.

President Duterte claims that his fight against gambling is finally over. Now, this market has the opportunity to truly grow. Even the Philippines’ richest man wants to grab his piece of the casino pie.

The Philippines’ Richest Man Announces Plans for Casino Resort

Manuel Villar has been one of the most successful men in the Philippines for years. His son currently operates the Prime Asset Ventures Inc., along with its subsidiary, Vertex Entertainment and Resorts Corporation. This company recently announced plans for a brand-new casino resort complex named the “Gold Coast Entertainment City.”

It came as a surprise to many. Until just now, this group had not expressed a desire to enter into the industry. Many analysts feel it’s directly due to President Duterte changing his tune on gambling.

According to the Philippine Daily Inquirer, this casino resort will be constructed just 10 to 15 minutes away from the Manila International Airport. President of Vertex, Caroline Cadelina, claims,

“The project will include a casino complex, hotels, food and beverage, and retail outlets and entertainment centers.”

There are a number of steps that will need to be taken before Manuel Villar and his companies can begin building a casino. They have already contacted Las Piñas City Mayor Imelda Aguilar. Her council will soon decide whether or not to grant a gaming license to Prime Asset Ventures.

Will Villar Gain Permission to Launch a Casino?

It’s very likely that Manuel Villar and his groups will receive permission to launch their casino resort. He’s spent a considerable amount of time in politics and has the type of connections to streamline the application process.

President Duterte had previously told PAGCOR to stop accepting new casino license applications. Now that his efforts to stop gambling activities are over, Villar will have an even better chance to receive permission to begin construction.

It’s very likely that more high-profile individuals will begin entering into the Philippines’ casino industry. This market is stronger than ever and may soon become the biggest gaming destination in Asia.

Will Villar’s companies receive permission to begin constructing their casino this year? Let us know what you think in the comment section below!

Rick Rockwell

As a longtime freelance writer, avid sports fan, former athlete, and experienced sports bettor, Rick Rockwell has risen up the ranks at to become the self-professed "King of the Blog" in his first year with the site. ...

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