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Gaming firm cashes out of its Cambodian operations

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A private security guards sit near Naga World Casino Complex in Phnom Penh yesterday. Hong Menea

Gaming firm cashes out of its Cambodian operations

Entertainment Gaming Asia Inc (EGA) has sold all of its gaming assets in Cambodia to the local owner of Dreamworld Club Poipet, a slot hall built and operated by EGA on the grounds of an existing casino in Poipet, for a cash payment of $900,000, the company said in a filing on Wednesday.

The Nasdaq-listed gaming company said it closed the sale of its 278 electronic gaming machines (EGMs) placed in Dreamworld Club Poipet, as well as 72 EGMs held in storage in Cambodia and spare parts, on December 23. It also announced that full ownership of the Dreamworld Club Poipet had reverted to the local partner after the two parties agreed to terminate a gaming machine operation and participation agreement that dated back to 2012.

“This asset sale is part of our continued efforts to refine our business operations and position ourselves for new opportunities,” Clarence Chung, chairman and CEO of EGA, said in a statement.

Dreamworld Club Poipet was EGA’s last gaming operation in Cambodia, having sold off its $2.5 million Pailin casino resort in 2014 for $500,000 after a disappointing two-year run.

EGA, which still has gaming machines in two casinos in the Philippines, had been winding down its Cambodian presence since July, when it announced it was selling 670 EGMs placed in the NagaWorld casino in Phnom Penh to an unnamed Cambodian party for $2.5 million. In October, it sold all 71 of its EGM seats in Thansur Bokor Highland Resort for cash proceeds of $250,000.

The company also reduced its business profile in May by selling off its Dolphin brand unit, which manufactures and distributes casino chips and table game equipment, to rival Gaming Partners International (GPI) for $5.9 million.

Chung said the company’s decision to dispose of its Cambodian gaming operations and assets was part of a strategic realignment and would free up capital to explore new business opportunities.

“The termination of the Dreamworld Club (Poipet) operations should have a minimal impact on our future cash flow from operations and provides additional resources to direct toward the execution of a new potential growth strategy, which involves the entrance into new areas such as film and related businesses,” he said.

Chung announced in August that the company was actively developing a free-to-play online social gaming platform for Asian markets. The company intends to monetise the app through in-game purchases.

EGA, majority controlled by Hong Kong-listed Melco International Development Ltd, reported $690,000 revenue during the third quarter of 2016, down from $4.5 million during the same period a year earlier. The firm posted a net loss of $744,000 during the three-month period, compared to net gain of $1.4 million a year earlier.

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